Ralph Waldo Emerson once said- Be silly, be honest, be kind. In our very noisy, busy, and often seemingly disingenuous world, it can be very difficult but, not impossible to do so. We are bombarded daily, from media outlets, social platforms, friends or family with real or fabricated dramas that may or may not have anything to do with our own lives. The upside to this unfortunate fact is that we have a choice about our life’s plotline. It’s true. Every moment of every new day, we get to choose how we will proceed. This brings me to the heart of this blog’s message, I CHOOSE kindness. My company chooses kindness. You should choose kindness too.

Our journey to practicing kindness here at Bäst has led us to become Idaho’s first Kindness Ambassadors for The World Kindness Movement through WKUSA, and we could not be more thrilled. The World Kindness Movement is an international movement with no political or religious affiliations. The formation of the organization crystallized at a conference in Tokyo, November 1997 when Japan brought together like-minded kindness organizations from around the world for the first time. WKM is now recognized as the peak global body for Kindness and whilst not a governing body it is a platform for collaboration and sharing. The mission of the movement is to inspire individuals towards greater kindness by connecting nations to create a kinder world. Members of the movement include over 28 nations with representatives from Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, India, Italy, Japan, Liberia, Malaysia, Mexico, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Romania, Scotland, South Africa, South Korea,Switzerland,Thailand, United Arab Emirates, Ukraine, United Kingdom and six member organisations in the USA. We wholeheartedly encourage you to visit their website: http://www.theworldkindnessmovement.org/member_nation/world-kindness-usa/

Interestingly enough, people that exhibit implacable kindness are often seen as weak.  Choosing to be kind takes real strength. When a human is victimized or hurt, no matter how small the transgression,  their ego may lead them to feelings of revenge. The truth of it is, Hurt People, hurt people. The cycle of “acting out” is a vicious one. Kindness does not seek to be right but to preserve peace of mind. The strength in pausing, instead of reacting is a dynamic choice that demonstrates a very strong individual. Choosing to be kind when we feel hurt, broadens your life’s frame of reference and is a symbol of respect to value the receiver. “Hurt is hurt, and every time we honor our own struggle and the struggles of others by responding with empathy and compassion, the healing that results affects all of us,” avows author and social researcher Brené Brown in her book, Rising Strong. Love her messages, by the way, great stuff.  https://brenebrown.com/  Each of us in life, move at our own pace. Each of us has a unique perspective on how we are treated and therefore how we treat others. It goes without saying that our journeys are, hopefully, a cycle of events followed by a reflection of the event, and a correction in future behaviors should there be other similar events.

Now, let’s be honest here, it’s very likely that there is another human (or humans) in this world that has known one of us Bäst members over the years, and they might have an example when kindness was not extended on a particular day. Well, as difficult as that pill is to swallow, each and every one of us human beings has the opportunity every moment of every day to respond with kindness. Apologies.  Maya Angelou said it best: “When you know better, do better.” I and my company are so profoundly committed to doing better and being better every day. On our journey, we learned something very important, kindness is not just about other people. Start with yourself. Start where you are. Start by saying something kind to yourself instead of what you were going to say. Take care of yourself. If you are kind to yourself you will have more to give others. Such a simple, powerful lesson.

Let me leave you with a passage from Mother Teresa’s poem titled “Anyway”, in which she states “People are often unreasonable, illogical and self-centered; forgive them anyway. If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives; be kind anyway.” Even the smallest acts of kindness create a ripple effect that will emanate out into the world. Open your eyes, ears, and heart. All of us are fighting some fight. A smile, a helping hand, a simple compliment or conveying some genuine empathy will go a long way to someone who is in need. Take the first step, join us in a “Kindness Rebrand”. Let’s all do our own small part in making this world kinder.