One would hope that Kindness had gotten better since I was a kid but it really isn’t the case. I can remember being a kid and my Grandmother sending me to go borrow something from the neighbor. Today there is a good chance you don’t even know the neighbor. It’s possible you could still get that cup of sugar you needed if you did ask, but I think people are afraid to.
Maybe that isn’t the best example but for me, it does go to the heart of the matter. Kindness used to come in many forms and all of them were very personal. You had relationships with friends and neighbors that simple weren’t tied to a wireless cord. Need to borrow something you walked next door and asked… then returned it. Car broke down and ya need a ride ask a neighbor. They were your friends, part of your community. I barely know my neighbors now and the only time I ask them to do something is when its something they should have already done.
The Internet Neighbors though… Someone needs help 1500 miles away you can do it with a click. I read about a kid who traded his XBOX on Craigslist for a car for his Mom… That’s great, that young man’s Mother has to be over the moon, proud of her Son. I’ve seen things for people who were robbed, or had their house destroyed. People overseas and at home dealing with natural disasters… All kinds of Internet flavored Kindness occurs… but. I don’t see any in day to day life anymore.
People tend to be always looking at their phone now, even when walking through traffic. It really seems the Zombie Apocalypse has arrived… and it’s us. No eye contact, No Good Morning, Good Afternoon. I worked in retail for 20 years, my favorite part of it was the people. When I left retail part of the reason is I was bored and honestly depressed. I see they are talking about replacing retail workers with Kiosks, and some places have started… sure why not… no one want to talk to a person in a store unless there is a problem. Lord help the Retail workers.
Here is what I would like all of you to do today. It won’t be difficult, just offer a friendly greeting to people you see, a kind word or two. It’s possible they won’t even look up from the phone, do it anyway. Do it for yourself, make a new friend you can grab a cup of coffee with, or borrow something from, maybe catch a lift if your cars in the shop… Kindness begins with people.. not screens.
Real life. From a real mom. Raising real little people.
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