“Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind; the second is to be kind; and the third is to be kind.”
― Henry James
No matter how many times you’ve been told “nice guys/girls finish last” do not believe it. Genuinely kindhearted people who project their positive attitudes are the true leaders for the people they encounter. Kind hearts and actions towards others inspire hope and potential in those with whom we see both momentarily and in every day interactions.
Being kind to everyone, not just your peers, your social or professional “superiors,” or your management, can make you both a better person and more respected within your community or organization. If you want to know the true nature of a person, ask their secretary or assistant their true opinion, observe their interactions with waitstaff, gauge the respect they show for their significant other, or note the attitude they project when someone asks for help or assistance. The ones you think most highly of are probably the ones who are regarded as kind and encouraging.
The size of a person’s bank account (great or small), the school they attended, the job they have, and the disingenuous messages they preach do not determine a successful person. However, the kindness in their heart, manifested by the love, respect, and encouragement they show for others does. We are only as successful as the amount of positivity we influence, as the amount of respect that we show for everyone, and the amount of greatness we encourage in others. We are only as successful as we are kind.
Only as great as we aspire can we be.
In life we unintentionally affect other people with our words and actions. We may be going about our daily business and in passing, affect another person with our attitude towards a task, the way we handle ourselves under pressure, and what we do when faced with certain obstacles. Our effect should be one that inspires and sets an example for our community and peers. Each and every one of us has impacted another life, probably without even knowing it. So live each day with purpose and meaning, knowing that your actions and life may inspire someone else to be better. Make someone else want to be a better person, just because you are being you. We’re all leaders each and every day that we show ourselves to the world.
Our love for others, whether it is romantic and devoted to one person, or general and towards our families and communities, cannot be marred by perceived wrongs or past ills. Having love in your heart means overcoming past transgressions and not keeping a record of them. This idea is at the heart of the Be Nice Campaign’s mission, because often those who need kindness and love the most are ones some people may view as having a difficult past, having done a “wrong,” or having made poor decisions. True kindness and love keeps no record of such things, and is influenced purely in the present moment. There is no place in a loving and kind heart for grudges, resentment, or a tally of perceived wrongs. Love is unconditional. Love, and kindness within it, keeps no record of wrongs.
Kindness note: “Happiness resides not in possessions, and not in gold. Happiness resides in the soul.” Democritus
We only need to look within ourselves to find happiness and fulfillment. Happiness and self-satisfaction come from a place within us and not from outside sources. No amount of material acquisitions, promotions, or accolades – mere distractions, can create happiness for us if we do not find and embrace our own source of happiness from the heart. How we perceive ourselves is worth more than how others perceive us. Happiness and satisfaction come from within us. When we find that happiness, we find our potential.
“Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.” Cicero.
Too often we become wrapped up in what we do not have and what more we desire from others, causing us to miss the beauty and wonder in what we have in our lives at this moment. Instead of asking more of someone, be grateful to have known him for who he is. Instead of wishing something were better, show gratitude for what it is. Instead of thinking “if only” could have changed a situation or relationship, be grateful for how it turned out and affected your life now. Being grateful for what we have can not only improve our happiness, but improve our overall attitude towards others and promotes kind thoughts and deeds.
Here at the Be Nice Campaign, we’re grateful for our friends and family members both here now and those we have known, loved, and lost. We’re grateful for our dog and all the happiness he brings. We’re grateful for our home, our love, and the abundances we have.
What are you the most grateful for today?
Anyone can bring positive change to the world and make other lives better. Encourage those with whom you interact. Don’t wait for someone else, whether it’s the government, a movement, or an authority figure to lead you before making a stand to help and encourage others.
Charity and kindness are virtues we have within us all. Simple acts such as not ignoring the homeless man by the subway when everyone else keeps walking, or lifting up and offering praise and encouragement to those who we supervise even though our own managers do not, can set the example for others and create a culture of kindness and respect.
Execute your ideas on your own, don’t wait for anyone else. Encourage others to be great. Be the leader you’ve been waiting for.