Gloria Kimberley suggests that whatever we choose to focus our attention on grows in our awareness and so why not focus on something positive?
Yes World Kindness Day actually is a thing! I’ve only recently found out about this event and am keen to promote it as it is linked to our project of creating a Festival of Kindness, Compassion and Wellbeing in Leeds next September.
Many of the communication channels we come into contact with on a daily basis tend to emphasise division, negativity and drama, which for the most part leaves us feeling fearful, angry and often overwhelmed. However, we can choose to change our focus and attention to kindness. In fact kind things happen around us every single day. If we don’t hear or see them it’s usually because we’re allowing our attention to become diverted elsewhere.
I recently joined Next Door – this is an app that connects you with people in your area or in other words, your neighbourhood. Of course, like many of you, I don’t see my next door neighbours regularly never mind the people a few houses down the street. The app opens me up to a wider local group and there was a lovely post the other day from a woman thanking the kind, young person who had helped her mother with Alzheimer’s when she went roaming around the neighbourhood. This person looked after her mum and had no obligation to do so nor was seeking anything from the situation other than to help a fellow human being who needed it. A story like that makes me feel warm, gives me faith in others and encourages me to be a bit kinder. I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels that way.
So let’s put our focus and attention on being kind today and see how it feels. You don’t have to do a big thing but something small and easy that fits into your day (acknowledge someone with a smile, say good morning or thank you, hold a door open for someone or let a car out in front of you). If that feels good then set the intention to incorporate a small act of kindness into your week and soon enough it will become a kind habit.
I completely understand when people say that there are so many bad things that happen in the world these days but the good far outweighs the bad when you start to look for it, even in dark moments. So let’s all tune into kindness and help it grow.
Gloria Kimberley is Project Leader of the Leeds Festival of Kindness, Compassion and Wellbeing