I was viewing the world through a particular lens last weekend. A lens of kindness seeking out people who would be able to offer support to my daughter if needed. As my husband and I settled Holly into her new university accommodation we were on high alert for her safety and security.
We needed not be overly concerned. She is spending her third year in the exciting, beautiful and kind city of Amsterdam and everyone we met there was so open, friendly and welcoming. We also have the reassurance that a large number of family, friends and acquaintances are nearby and have offered their support in a variety of ways. How comforting to know that she is surrounded by such kind and generous people. Amsterdam and its inhabitants clearly care for one another and their environment.
A distinct absence of cars and overwhelming dominance of bicycles, fabulously efficient public transportation and gorgeous public parks all come together to make such a difference to the environment. The city is so green, with trees and flowers everywhere. Something I have come to notice in life more and more is that I need to be surrounded by nature as I find it very calming. My happiness levels are certainly visibly topped up with serotonin when in nature.
It's the same with kindness. It feels good when you do good. Such a simple equation. Being kind gives you the opportunity to help and impact the lives of others. It often costs nothing to be kind to others and yet it brings so many benefits not only to you but also to the recipient of your kindness.
A while ago back in April, I shared with you in my ‘Focus on Magic’ blog that I had been attempting to track down a particular manuscript my grandfather had written. Well, with much excitement the BBC Archives found it for me and this week, I had another surprise drop into my email inbox.
My grandfather, George F. Kerr, had been the lead scriptwriter at the Australian Broadcasting Commission back in the 1950s and 1960s and a very kind PhD student based in Australia reached out to share with me that he was studying the works of George for his PhD. He shared that he had many of my grandfather’s manuscripts in his possession and asked if I would like to have copies of them. Absolutely, I would, thank you. The wonders of technology, the serendipity of this world and the kindness of people never cease to astound me.
What act of kindness could you offer that will make a huge difference to someone else today? Could you offer someone your seat on the train? Let someone out in front of you in the car? Pay forward a coffee at the coffee shop? Invite a friend over for dinner? Compliment a stranger? Leave a note of gratitude for someone?
Whatever you do today, do it with kindness. The world will thank you for it.
Focus on Kindness!
ACTION POINT - What act of kindness will you show today?