Be kind. Two very simple words and yet when I saw them emblazoned across my son’s school jumper last friday it occurred to me that we so easily forget to be just that.
My son had chosen the bright yellow sticker to wear at school in support for World Mental Health Day where pupils were asked to wear something yellow in return for a small donation.
Be kind. It’s one of the first lessons we teach our children-
Be kind, share.
Be kind, don’t hit
Be kind, let them play
Be kind, don’t say that
At what point do we stop teaching that? Or more importantly, when do we forget that? When in our lives do we think that it’s okay to disregard someone’s feelings? To treat them in a way we probably wouldn’t want to be treated ourselves? To form an opinion when we have no idea who they are?
I’m guilty of it, we all are.
Kindness doesn’t have to be a grand gesture, it doesn’t mean we have to bend over backwards or go to the ends of the earth. It’s the small things, like smiling at someone on the school run, holding a door open or not gossiping.
These small acts of kindness can make all the difference and it’s not just the person you’re being kind to that’s getting something positive out of it because you will too. Being kind is actually kind of selfish because it makes you feel good, you feel more positive and ultimately it makes for a happier you.
In a world where you can be anything, be kind. Caroline Flack wrote this on her instagram in the weeks before she took her own life. Just two words, two words that a two year-old can understand could have stopped this. If people were more kind, less horrible or rather if they didn’t have anything nice to say, not say anything at all, they maybe Caroline and people like her would still be breathing the same air as you and I are today.