"Hold the door, say please, say thank you.
Don't steal, don't cheat and don't lie.
I know you have mountains to climb,
but always stay humble and kind."
The first time I heard this song, I was so struck by the words and the intentions. Sometimes a song comes along that just stops you in your tracks and makes you listen. Like the song "Happy" that went on to become such a phenomenon, "Humble and Kind," by country superstar Tim McGraw calls to us to find the best in ourselves, and remember that love, kindness and compassion should be a way of life, not something out of the ordinary. Kindness breeds happiness, for the giver as well as the recipient.
I can remember a time when holding doors, saying please and thank you, addressing people as Mr. Miss, Mrs. and Sir (and yes, even Ms) was the norm. Saying excuse me, pardon me, and the big one, I'm sorry, came as easily as breathing. Where did that all do? When did we decide as a nation that kindness, compassion and even common civility was not longer needed? Have we been so hypnotized and addicted by technology that every day, decent, human interaction has been marginalized to the back row?
Call me old fashioned, but I still believe that peace in the world begins with peace in the home and the community, and all of it begins with kindness, compassion and civility. I even say "excuse me" when trying to get past a fur baby blocking my path in my apartment, or disturbing them when I need to turn on the vacuum cleaner (they hate that). I understand that everything and everyone responds to kindness. Yes, I am one of those people who talk to their plants, the neighborhood animals both wild and domestic, and perfect strangers. I am that person who will smile at someone walking down the street, or at the girl behind the counter at Dunkin' Donuts, or to the checkout lady at WalMart. Mine could be the only smile they get that day, or the only kind words they hear. I like to think that I am doing my part for the healing of the energy on Mother Earth and all of her children. It doesn't cost you a cent to be kind, but the return on your investment is beyond measure.
We all have problems. We all have "mountains to climb." Doesn't the climb get a little easier, though, when people are kind to us? I know I see things much more clearly and with a much more positive perspective when I have been the recipient of unsolicited kindness. I'm not talking about anything huge. I'm talking about the simple things like having someone hold the door, letting me get ahead of them in line if I only have one item, serving me in a restaurant with a big smile of welcome. When you do that for others, it makes them feel special. They feel seen, validated ... they feel that they matter to someone.
So what do you say? Let's start a Humble and Kind Campaign! Let's make it a priority to see how many times during the day we can be kind and polite to a total stranger. Maybe we can start a Facebook page called Humble and Kind so we can post our list and the reactions of the people who are on the receiving end. Who knows? Maybe we can start a world-wide phenomenon called Humble and Kind. Stanger things have happened.
By the way, thank you. No special reason. Just because you're here.
And so it is.