Kindness is one of the simplest gifts you can give others and yourself. Showing you care, especially in this fast-paced world, is important but requires mindfulness. Small acts of kindness, like looking into someone's eyes, saying hello, or saying thank you, can dramatically change the mood and attitude. When you notice someone upset or angry, pausing to ask, "Is there something that I can do for you?" creates an energy shift and fosters connections.
This kindness should extend to yourself, as well. We are not meant to keep going at an unrelenting pace. When you realize you haven't eaten or sipped water, pause in the middle of the rush to another email or errand. Taking a few minutes for yourself will allow you to return to your tasks with better focus.
Just before an important presentation I made recently, something unexpected happened. I took the morning slower than usual, got up a bit later, got in my walk and meditation, then went off to the shower. Calm, peaceful. Half dressed and coiffed, the power went out. Panic set in with disbelief. No, no, no!! This was important! My power rarely goes out – VERY rarely! And NOW????? Whaaaaattttt????
I could have quickly beaten myself up over why I didn't get my ducks in a row first, but after the brief panic, I used some energy and breathing techniques and talked with myself – 'you've got this Cyn…' and off I went.
I packed up my makeup, hairdryer, and laptop and went to a friend's house, where I always have access. I prepped and set up my computer, and the presentation went off without a hitch. I let the folks know who joined me and what had happened – we all had a bit of a giggle. This is "Breathing Spaces," by the way….
Panic and anger can rise quickly, but they do you more harm than good. There is so much power in pausing before reacting. Breathe. Be mindful. Be kind. Say hello. Hold a door open for a stranger, and don't forget to keep one open for yourself, too.