Today marks the 19th annual World Kindness Day. It’s a day to acknowledge all the kind acts around us and what it really means to bring kindness into your everyday actions.
People often equate ‘kind’ to words like nice, polite, cordial, courteous…we smile, nod, and open doors for strangers. Yes, this is kindness at a minimum, but to be truly kind goes way beyond this.
If you think about the greatest and most inspiring leaders out there, they have a level of kindness that encompasses two things:
The first is the kindness that has grit.
Think about kindness at work.
Your co-worker is going to ask for a raise from their manager and requested to “dry-run” the conversation with you. You see something that could help make their case but don’t speak up because you think you might be wrong or it might not be helpful.
The kind thing to do is ditch the “I don’t know, it doesn’t matter, I’m sure it’ll be fine.”
The kind thing is to be open and direct with your conversations.
It’s getting over ‘being right’ and focusing on being real.
It’s giving people new opportunities to develop themselves.
It’s giving feedback the moment you sense it will be most valuable.
What it’s not is waiting and staying quiet.
The second is being kind to yourself.
Sometimes it comes in the form of an internal pep talk or writing yourself little notes of gratitude.
Taking care of yourself matters and it makes a difference to the people in your life.
Take this day to think about how kindness shows up in your leadership.
Is there anything I’ve left unsaid that would be helpful to another person?
How can I forgive myself today?
What do I require right now to be at my best?
Remember, to be kind is to be powerful.
Meet Steph. She is a force. She is a firecracker. She is a lover of love.