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How sad that we should need a day to tell ourselves to be kind to others… And how much more sad is it that it most likely goes unnoticed for the majority!
I assume I mentioned being a member of Join Me back in May so I’m going to avoid that topic and instead write about something I’ve been thinking about recently…
A week or two ago I read an article about the current state of affairs in the UK, or more accurately the current state of politics. The article was about the divisiveness of conservatism and how it fosters selfishness, greed and mistrust, amongst other things. It focused more broadly on the mindset that such politics promotes and argued that it did so to the detriment of all. I’ve been thinking about that article a lot lately and how much I agree with it. Not just as a criticism of the current government (because I do not see a big enough difference between any of the parties at the moment, so do not think things would be all that different otherwise), but more in terms of how it feels as though society is shifting (some might say quickly, others at a glacial pace) toward this mindset. The mindset of self interest, of gain in the face of, if not at the expense of others. The idea of not being happy until you have more than the person next to you… All of these things were described as being part of the way the government would like us to think.
It then went on to cite studies showing how things like giving to charity and sacrificing time to help others have been proven to increase happiness. How societies with stronger social bonds and reduced levels of socioeconomic inequality function better.
Since then I have been thinking a lot about how people are really trying to show the world that this sort of behaviour makes sense and increases almost every positive aspect of our lives, and more importantly that they can actually work. At least to the point where surely they are worth taking seriously and trying. Some of these ideas are more than just claiming some kind of karma will be your reward and that’s all you need etc. they are genuinely thought through and in some cases trialled in more forward thinking places.
Here’s my favourite at the moment: Switzerland’s proposal to pay people for being alive
But also this: The Rolling Jubilee Project
So to get back to the title of the post, it may sound cheesy, but if we can all try to make every day ‘world kindness day’ then maybe we can really start to make a difference. My point is that by creating a kinder society, EVERYONE is better off. Just stop and think about that for a minute, and maybe the next time you find yourself in a situation where you could make the effort to be kind, you might just start a little ripple…