In 2016, Tim McGraw recorded the song Humble and Kind which went on to win the Grammy for Best Country Song. The lyrics touched many and soon, t-shirts, mugs, and other items sported the statement, “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.”
Right now, in the current environment, the choice to be kind is rarely made. Look at the comments to any social media post, whether on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram or some other social media platform, and you will find comments which are anything but kind. For the sake of our cumulative psyche, it’s time to “unplug” for a bit, and turn to kindness as the seed for change. Kindness is a powerful tool for change- in ourselves, those we touch, and for our communities.
Meditation can only do so much. Walks on the beach can provide only so much calm. When we constantly allow the negativity found on social media to live inside our heads, relationships suffer; our health suffers, our communities suffer…
Does this mean we ignore the issues which must be addressed in our society? Of course not. But when did being kind and being a force for positive change in our communities become mutually exclusive concepts?
Being the force for change does not require actual force, negative and angry social media posts, or deceptive headlines. In fact, such social media posts are often counterproductive. Grassroots level change is a simple concept. All that is required is to stop, take a moment, and reach out your hand to help someone.
There are many opportunities to seed change through kindness. Offer your time to tutor those students who are a bit behind after months of online classes so they are ready for the new school year in the fall . Mentor a recent graduate as they navigate this crazy job market. Volunteer your time to pass on your knowledge and skills to those who wish to learn. Donate to local causes, after researching where that money goes and how it is spent. If you see a need in your community which is not being met, be the seed which takes root to make that change happen, and to meet that need.
If there is an issue you want addressed on a larger scale, write to your congressman/congresswoman, senator, state representative or local city counsel. Complaining on the internet is not as productive as contacting your representatives and working with them on new laws, regulations, or funding.