Aunt Jane said, “If you have a choice to be kind, be kind.”
I was on a phone call recently catching up with my great-aunt Jane who lives in a small town, population 864 people, located in the state of West Virginia. My aunt has a lifetime of wisdom and is always sharing her powerful one-liners with anyone willing to listen (or sometimes not willing).
During this particular phone call, she shared a simple statement, that has caused me to reflect and has since found a place on my bedroom mirror. Aunt Jane said, “If you have a choice to be kind, be kind.”
Kindness truly is a choice, and we may never know the ripple effect we have on others from making that choice. During my everyday interactions, whether that is at work, at the grocery store or with my closest friends and family, I can choose to be kind. That is something I have control of. It’s that simple. It is easy to let our interactions with every day strangers or our loved ones become neutral… we all do it. But when we have a little extra to give; a smile, a comment, an act of service, we have the ability to shift the lives of others. And those kind memories will stay with a person long after the negative ones fade.
I’ve been striving to be more conscious of choosing kindness throughout my day and it’s amazing to me the opportunities that have “coincidentally” presented themselves. I’ve found that those opportunities aren’t always easy or convenient, but frankly, neither is life and we never know when someone may be struggling. We can all benefit from Aunt Jane’s sage words of choosing what kind of ripple we are creating in someone’s life.