13 Reasons Why Kindness Counts
Dedicated to the loving memory of K.H.B
What if I told you that with a simple smile, you could change the course of someone’s day… or life? Would you smile more at people walking in the street, your office mates…..your kids? The rising popularity of the hit show “13 reasons why” is being attentively watched by middle and high school youth across the world. It has challenged our idea of what a suicidal person looks like. My own perception was recently rocked when a friend shockingly took her own life. She was the most loving, grounded and content person you could encounter. No one ever could have know the mental unrest she was experiencing. Through these experiences and so many others from my interactions with my clients, I have learned that it’s in the small moments where we feel disconnected and alone that we give power to the dark thoughts to take us down.
We’ve all heard the near-tragic story about a young man on his way home to take his own life only to be fortuitously intersected by a stranger who shows him kindness. This stranger’s act of benevolence at the perfect moment in time restores the young man’s faith in humanity at the single most defining milestone in his life. I am by no means suggesting that being kind to others can eradicate mental illness and other forms of emotional pain. What I am however suggesting is that in a world that is at times incubated by fear, that we do our part to spread love and light. Tiny ripples can become giant waves that dissolve the boundaries that we have unwillingly placed upon ourselves and upon others.
Let’s come together in unity and do our part to bring kindness for ourselves and others into our every day interactions and encounters.
1 — Everyone is fighting their own inner battle — although life brings us so many joys and victories, it is undeniable that we each face our own individual struggles within our own minds that nobody knows about. Make every effort to find compassion for others — even when you can’t relate. Be kind.
2 — Human connection is paramount — In a world where we are looking down at our phones more than we are looking up at the people around us, we need to revisit this idea of truly connecting with another human being and what that looks like for us. Be kind.
3 — We are losing ourselves — Sometimes we get so caught up in making sure that everyone around us is well and that other people’s perceptions of us are as we wish them to be, that we forgot ourselves in the mix. Practice self- kindness and know that your feelings and your thoughts matter. Be kind.
4 — You make a difference — Our words, our energy and our light have the potential to impact another human being’s life in so many ways. Don’t take that power lightly. Be kind.
5 — It feels good to be kind — Robert Ingersoll’s famous quote that states “We rise by lifting others”. Supporting others gives us a natural high. Unfortunately we all get so caught up in the “busy-ness” of our own lives that we forget to take the time to practice acts of kindness. Take a moment and step outside of yourself and raise somebody up who needs your support . Be kind.
6 — Kindness is contagious — When people are in the presence of kindness, they can’t help but feel joyful. Expand your reach and watch all of those around you enliven in the presence of your warmth. Be kind.
7 — Small actions can have far-reaching consequences — There is not doubt that the human race is connected in more ways than we can quantify. When you do good, you cause a ripple effect on our planet that reaches the masses. Be kind.
8 — You can be a voice for someone who doesn’t have one — Acts of altruism speak volumes for those whose voices have been silenced. Speak up for someone who needs it and you will give them to opportunity to learn how to speak on their own behalf. Be kind.
9 — Somebody is watching you — We are so much more influential than we realize. The next generation is observing and picking up our cues and how to treat others. Set a good example by being an ambassador for thoughtfulness and mindfulness. Be kind.
10 — Judgement hurts — We need to elevate the consciousness of the planet by seeking to understand rather than to judge. When we judge another, we are essentially judging ourselves and creating separation between ourselves and those around us. The healing of the world begins with each of us. Be kind.
11 — Kindness is in our nature — Human beings are intuitively geared to be good and do good. Fear is a learned emotion. Reconnect to the part of you that is love and allow that to guide your everyday interactions. Be kind.
12 — Spread love — We have the same power to spread good as those who wish to spread hate do. Find a way to share your unique light. A simple smile or a positive thought on social media goes a long way. Be kind.
13 — Just because…..Do we really need a reason to be kind? Just. Be. Kind.
If you’re thinking about suicide, are worried about a friend or loved one, or would like emotional support, contact the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1–800–273–8255
Melody Pourmoradi has been coaching women for over a decade on how to create their vision of a truly kick-ass life. She thrives on sharing her message of self-empowerment and a wellness-centered lifestyle through her writing. In her most recent endeavor GiRLiFE Empowerment, she has created a digital course to support women to create income generating girls empowerment groups in their own communities. Her greatest goal is for every young girl to find her own voice and live a life that lights her up from the inside-out. Melody is married to the love of her life and together they are the proud parents of twin girls.
Originally published at www.huffingtonpost.com on April 26, 2017.