February 10, 2011

Teaching Kindness



I think most of us would like to be thought of as kind individuals...I also think that we would like our children to possess this quality, but have you ever thought about how children become kind? Can you teach kindness? I think so. For me it comes down to this ...you need to be what you want your children to be. You need to teach by doing, not preaching! It's a simple truth...a behaviour modeled and observed is far more powerful than a behaviour spoken about.

Now speaking of kindness, this past December, I was bowled over by Katherine Marie's advent post, where she committed to 24 acts of kindness running up to Christmas day. (To read about it, do go see here). But even more impressive, is that Katherine has decided to continue with her kindness mission and has challenged fellow readers to commit to 52 weeks of random acts of kindness in 2011. Quite extraordinary don't you think?! Katherine has called this amazing project 52 Smiles and has given lots of wonderful ideas and inspiration over on her website, so be sure to check it out.

I have certainly been inspired and so have decided to take up this challenge. I would really like to focus on kindness and compassion in 2011 and in making it part of my life, I know I'll be instilling it in my children. They will join me for the ride! Now, I don't know what it is like where you live, but here in South Africa we really have many opportunities to be kind...without having to look very far. On a daily basis South Africans are approached at their homes and in their cars (at traffic intersections and shopping malls) and we are asked for food, clothing and money. We have such high rates of unemployment here, that others begging is a part of our lives and honestly, sometimes one can even feel a bit harassed. (Just keeping it real) For me personally, this year I want to always give with a generous and happy heart and I want to give more intentionally. I also want to share my plans with my children and I want to act on it.

Maybe you want to join me for the ride too? I'll keep you posted now and again of our efforts.

Take care till next time...

PS. Yesterday here in Cape Town it was about 35 degrees Celsius, so my postman knocked on my door with a huge grin on his face. Being kind felt really good!

5 comments:

km said...

You inspire us all with your GENEROUS spirit and HAPPY HEART!!! I can't wait to see how this year unfolds with all your creative kindness acts. I bet your mail carrier was just tickled with this sweet act of kindness. :):)

Caz said...

Love this! Cant help but think how relieved your postman must have been to see your sign, what a wonderful gesture.

Jill said...

This is just wonderful! I agree that our children learn by us showing, not telling them the way. What a lucky mail carrier you have!! Keep up the great work.

Chels said...

I've been meaning to comment on this post since you published it but I've been really lazy! Your birthday post made me finally click through my feed!

What a wonderful concept this is and I especially like your example about the postman! I know we'll do it this summer! Being kind is essential in having a good life!

So true-- "you need to be what you want your children to be"-- but sometimes so hard too. Our children are always watching us and I have to admit that I do things that I don't want them to do!

Thanks for sharing an inspiring post Georgia! (Wish we could have a picnic together.) ☺

Sarah said...

I have chills from reading this! I LOVE this post. And you know...we currently live in China and are asked daily for money. I have to admit, I don't usually like it BUT I love your goal of ALWAYS giving! I"m going to follow in your footsteps! THANK YOU!

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