I’d be kind if I had the time. Thankfully, you don’t have to be kind when the house is on fire. And it seems like there’s always a crisis.
It’s not that you’re intentionally unkind. It’s that crisis mode frees us from obligations to show kindness. Sadly, some of us are in constant crisis mode. But…
Constant crisis mode springs from the myth of self-importance.
I challenged myself and some friends to make this kindness week. A leader texted me this morning, “I’m trying to be kind. But it’s not easy.” Now there’s some truth!
Developing a leadership behavior is more difficult than simply getting things done.
The trouble with kindness:
Kindness is about others. When you’re consumed with yourself, kindness is bothersome.
Kindness takes effort. You’re consumed with timelines and deadlines. It takes effort to remember simple acts of kindness.
Time pressure makes serving others difficult.
You’re juggling a million important things. The first thing that drops is kindness.
Shift in thinking:
Kindness is less burdensome if you show up to serve, even if you have a full agenda.
All it takes to be unkind is to neglect kindness.
You’re unkind if you aren’t practicing kindness.
Kindness is about who you are, not what you do.
Increments of kindness:
Leadership development is like being on a diet. Success comes in small increments. It’s better to lose ½ a pound a week for six weeks than 3 pounds in one week. The results last longer, too.
Kindness challenge: Walk around with your head up looking for opportunities to be kind.
Kindness, for me, is looking for opportunities to show respect to others.
What does showing kindness look like to you?
Challenge: Ask coworkers, “If I showed more kindness, what would you see me doing?”
Don’t miss the video about kindness and toughness on Facebook. (3:13)