Kindness – a virtue I would want my child to imbibe

I open the newspaper and am aghast to see the news of a young lady being trolled and sent rape threats for voicing her opinion. While she did talk on a sensitive topic which has the probability of invoking anger and probably hurting sentiments of certain sections of society , it is her opinion as an individual. Resorting to trolling her and threatening her of consequences such as rape is absolute blasphemy. Makes me shudder and think what kind of world am I living in and most importantly what kind of world am I leaving behind for my little daughter Angel?

I then scroll down through my twitter feed and its not much different. An actor/model or politician or sometimes a common gal/guy has made a comment and everyone is hell bent on showing them their place. Makes me shudder and think how we have forgotten the very basics of being kind and have an empathetic attitude towards one another, We may not agree to the other person but does that mean we forget how we can agree to disagree in a kinder way?

Here is what I would want to tell my beloved daughter about how being kind which is often seen as a sign of weakness these days is in fact such a strong virtue and how she can make a difference to not just her life but of so many others by a practicing a simple thing like kindness

My dear Angel,

As human beings it is  our duty to give back to society and make the world a better place to live. In this regard the message that I would like to pass on to you is to develop an empathetic attitude. Only with empathy, can you make a difference my child -not just to your life but to others as well. Be it to the policeman who stops you for not wearing your seat belt, or the shopkeeper who frowns at you, your boss with whom you just had a not so pleasant discussion, your MIL (mother in law) who’s constantly over you, the neighbors kids who can’t stop screaming, your friend with whom you just had a tiff- believe me you would see things in a totally new perspective once u learn to empathize with the person.
I once attended a corporate training on soft skills and they showed us a video on how a boss is screaming his wits off at an employee. The poor chap is all heartbroken and deluded and there starts a negative chain of emotions towards his boss. We were also shown the other side of the story- what drove the boss to behave in such a way. Turned out he had a hazardous morning starting with a quarrel with his wife, he was caught by the cop for jumping a signal and slapped with a fine, all this was bound to dampen his spirits and his anger was directed that the unsuspecting employee. If the employee had even a bit of inkling about what drove his boss’s irrational behavior he would have taken things differently. 

The message that was being conveyed here is before reacting , place yourself in the opponent person’s shoes, think what drove their behaviour, you may not have all the answers but pausing a moment to think will itself alter your reactions. 

In today’s world where people hardly have time for each other, relationships are ended by a Facebook post, life’s high is all about drinking and partying, where is the time to pause and think of others? No one has the patience to understand others. Boss gives you a below expected appraisals-job change, a friend doesn’t talk to you properly- delete them from your life, the maid is not efficient- throw her out. We don’t even take a second to think what prompted their behaviour, having been thrown in the same situation would we have behaved any differently? 

Empathy my dear will help you make peace with yourself and with others. Your instinctive reactions, anger, negative vibes would all vanish if you can empathise with the person. I am not saying they may always be right, may be you are- but this will help you avoid the host of ill feelings which will ultimately make you the sufferer. The world will be a much happier place if we all learn this art as we would be more content, avoid fights and pessimistic thoughts. 

Happiness is contagious so we end up spreading more of it around us and the butterfly effect will make it multiply manifold. There is a dearth of happiness in this world and we badly need more of it. You my dear Angel can play a role in making this earth a better place – start with a tiny step, it will make you more content and at peace with yourself and you would see the ripple effect for yourself.

All the love in my heart

Linking this post to #Monday Mommy Moments

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