So I was Wikipedia-ing the word “kindness” when Colin came by and remarked “You know, that’s also something a villain in a movie would do.” And that’s what life with a comedian is like.
So where was I? Oh yes. The definition…
Wikipedia defines kindness as “a behavior marked by ethical characteristics, a pleasant disposition, and concern for others. It is known as a virtue, and recognized as a value in many cultures and religions.”
Concern for others. That’s exactly why I am writing about kindness. This morning, I experienced kindness at one of the most stressful places this time of year: Tire Warehouse. Winter in Vermont is here and EVERYONE is getting their winter tires on, including me. This is the last place I wanted to be, but I’ve been practicing this thing we’re calling “choose to enjoy.” So there I was, hanging with all of the other angry and impatient customers that were waiting around. I was actively trying my best to smile and be thankful for having some time away from my laptop. Because let’s be honest, we all need more of that.
While I was waiting in line, I watched the manager at the front desk handle each customer with patience, eye contact, and a huge smile. He made sure to give his full attention to each one. I watched him be KIND and show complete concern over each customer’s situation. I was touched by this, given the circumstances he found himself in – a long line of people watching his every move.
When it was my turn, I made sure to tell him he was doing an amazing job. Because he was. And that took me 5 seconds to say and who knows, maybe made his heart a little lighter.
And then if my kindness meter wasn’t already off-the-charts, another man working there cautioned me that it’s a $225 fine to drive around with a foot of snow on top of your car (whoops! and don’t forget to brush your roof off!), and promptly went and shoveled it off for me. WHAT?!!
On my drive back home, I found myself taking my time, slowing to allow cars merge in front of me, and smiling. All because of simple acts of kindness. And that’s how it works. I showed kindness because I was shown kindness. Just like that.
So be kind. It spreads.