I really like words, and sometimes I wonder if I missed my calling as an etymologist. Today the word of the day is kindness. I’m not exactly sure where the word came from but I was thinking about how it starts with kin. Even though I’m not a real etymologist, I do know that kin is all about family.
Culturally, it seems that we’ve lost grasp of what it actually means to be kind. As weird as it seems, I’ve noticed that a lot of people use “kind” in a negative way. When you are “kind” or even “just being kind”, it usually means that you’re being unauthentic. Instead of telling someone the truth, you settle for being kind and lying in order to make them feel better. Kindness is kind of just this easy way to avoid reality by putting on a smile. Here’s a stereotypical kind person conversation “Good morning friend! How’s it going?” … “I’m good, and you?” … “Doing great now that I had my morning coffee!”. This leads to an interesting question: when was the last time you had a conversation like that with a family member? For me the answer is never. Very rarely do I waste time making small talk with family members. When I talk with my family we talk about real things that are actually impacting our lives.
I don’t think that being a kind person has anything to do with being optimistic or happy all the time. It don’t think it has anything to do with complementing people on their outfits. I think kindness is all about being real. Kindness is telling the people you care about that you don’t agree with the destructive decisions they’re making. Kindness is having the courage to tell someone that you’re struggling and need some help. It’s time to start putting the kin back in kind!