Picture for illustration purposes only.
PHOTO BY ARCHIVE
When was the last time you snapped at someone because you weren’t in a good mood? We’re often so overworked, caught up in our own thoughts and hustle that we forget people around us also have their fair share of troubles and bad days. It doesn’t take much to be kind to someone, whether that’s the person cleaning your office, a colleague or family member.
Here are five simple ways you can be kinder to people in your everyday life:
Next time you feel like snapping at someone, take a deep breath and count to ten. This will allow you to pause for a moment and reconsider your reaction. Can what you want to say be conveyed in a more calm manner? Think about how you’d want someone to speak to you if you were in their place.
Sometimes all a person wants is someone to listen to them. If someone is having a bad day or you’re on the receiving end of someone’s temper, ask them if they’d like to talk about what’s bothering them. Suggest going for a walk or grabbing a quick bite together — this will allow them to have a change of pace and allow them to vent to you about whatever it is that’s on their mind. Perhaps you can even offer a perspective to the situation they hadn’t thought about.
Reach out to a friend who is going through a tough time and ask if you can help with any chores, whether that’s picking up something from the grocery store when you’re running errands, or it could be watching their child while they get a quick breather or have time to focus on other tasks.
Often the kindest thing you can do for someone is let go of the grudges you hold against them and hit reset. This also applies to yourself. Life is already too stressful and hectic for us to hold on to the small things. Did someone cut you off on your way to work on a Sunday morning? Let it go. Messed up during a presentation? Let it go because you’re only human. Additionally, find coping mechanisms to release the stress: whether it’s simply writing it down in a journal or boxing your frustrations out.
Even simple acts such as buying someone a cup of coffee, holding the door open for a colleague, sending a text message checking in or even buying the neighbourhood dog a treat can help us be kinder toward one another. It doesn’t take much but a helpful gesture can go a long way.
These everyday acts are simple to incorporate in our daily life and by being kinder to someone, you’re also creating a support group who’ll be there for you when you’re having a rough day. Plus, you’re also building good karma and who doesn’t want that?
Aakanksha Tangri is the founder of Re:Set, an online resource of tools and stories on well-being
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