A little kindness can go a long way in making the world a better place. But turn on the news or scroll through Facebook and suddenly it feels like we are living in a world that isn't very kind. You have no control over other people's behaviors but you do have control over yourself and how you choose to act every day. We challenge you to #BeKind following our seven-day challenge, and see how kindness can have a positive impact on your life and those around you!
#BeKind to Yourself
Being kind to others is very important. But in order to really care for and be kind to others, you must first be kind to yourself. This means admiring the beauty of other people without questioning your own! You can start being kind to yourself by improving your self-esteem and learning how to
talk positively about yourself.
#BeKind to Your Family
Family. That term can have tons of different meanings. Naturally, it means parents, siblings and other relatives. But anyone you consider to be family can be one of the closest persons in your life. And sometimes, it's those people who are closest to us that we take for granted and forget to include in our kindness. Here are some ways to be kind to family members:
- Leave an appreciation note somewhere for a parent or sibling... or each family member!
- Do an extra chore around the house.
- Surprise a family member with something nice, like a cup of coffee or a hug.
Spread kindness to your family.
#BeKind to Your Friends
Friendships are unique, because unlike family, they are relationships we choose to have. These are the people who are constantly cheering for you and pushing you to be the best version of yourself. Kindness should be at the heart of any friendship. Showing kindness in friendships can include:
- Being a good listener. Don't interrupt when a friend is talking to you and offer advice when necessary.
- Be genuinely happy for your friends when they achieve a dream or goal.
- Give them compliments! They are always great for strengthening any friendship
- Be honest. Express your opinions but keep your friends' feelings in mind.
#BeKind to Co-Workers or Peers
Being kind in a workplace or classroom presents a different kind of challenge. Co-workers, fellow students or other peers come from many different backgrounds and usually have a wide range of opinions and experiences. It is important to remember to always be kind, even if you don't see eye to eye with someone with whom you work or go to school. Tips for workplace kindness include:
- Use manners. Hold the door open for others, and say "Please" and "Thank you."
- Offer positive feedback and compliments when a person does a job well and provide firm but pleasant constructive criticism when a person needs to improve his or her performance.
- Smile. It lets people know you are open, friendly… and kind!
#BeKind to Your Community
Community is a broad term; it can be your city, your neighborhood or the church you attend. Communities are important to your well-being because they give you a sense of belonging and make you feel like you're part of something bigger than yourself. Here are some ways to be kind to your community:
- Volunteer for events or with organizations that interest you. This is a great way to contribute to the greater good and to meet people with similar interests.
- Donate to causes you are passionate about.
- Pay for the coffee or food for the person behind you in a drive-thru lane.
- Do some yard work or house repairs for an elderly person in your neighborhood.
#BeKind to Your Environment
As the world continues to grow in population, our environment will continue to face serious issues like air and water pollution, deforestation and many others. It is our human duty to be kind to the environment and to protect it for future generations. These are simple ways to be kind to the environment:
- Pack a waste-free lunch by using reusable containers and bags, and include more whole foods like fruits and veggies. Whole foods have less packaging and are healthier for you as well.
- Unplug or turn off household electrical appliances like toasters, blow dryers, phone chargers and radios when they are not in use. Use reusable coffee mugs and water bottles to reduce waste.
- Go for a short walk around your neighborhood and pick up at least five pieces of litter. (Think of how much cleaner your neighborhood would be if everyone did this!)
- Buy reusable grocery bags for your shopping trips!
#BeKind to Your Enemies
It's normal to know people you don't get along with or just don't like. But try doing something that's not normal… be kind to them! It can be difficult to be nice to people when you don't have a good relationship with them. But by being kind to them you are in turn being kind to yourself. Here are some tips for meeting that challenge:
- Try to understand them. Put yourself in their shoes and look at things from their perspective to understand why they do what they do or act a certain way.
- Forgive. Maybe someone did something horrible to you in the past. But holding a grudge or holding onto negative feelings can be a major distraction that prevents you from moving forward. Rather than dwelling on the past, learn to forgive and get on with your life.
- Reach out to them. This may be the last thing you want to do, but it may be the only way to realize that a person acts a certain way because he or she has problems you don't even know about. Sometimes, just being kind can turn an enemy into a friend.