We all spend a lot of time and effort trying to improve our bank accounts. We save and invest, because we know that over the years, that compounding interest will provide a nice nest egg for retirement.
But what about your kindness account? The compounding effect over time in this account, can yield all kinds of rewards, -some much better than money!
I like to think about it like this. Each time I don’t react in anger, and I show compassion, I make a deposit. Each time I direct my brain to look for the good and I express appreciation, BOOM – another deposit. When I choose to look in the mirror and love everything I see, my kindness account grows.
Sometimes it might feel like too much of an effort. Being angry feels more powerful, so we indulge a little and actually enjoy it in the moment. But dang it, it always makes a hefty withdrawal from our kindness account and leaves us feeling worse.
Have you ever watched someone change over the course of many years? When you first met them, they were happy and sweet. They were optimistic and fun to be around. But several years later after dealing with hard things, they changed.
Their demeanor and attitude became sour. The way they spoke became angry or bitter. Maybe even their appearance changed as they neglected their personal care. They carry a cloud with them that dampens the room. Their kindness account is depleted.
On the other hand, I’m sure you’ve seen the opposite as well! You know someone else who has had incredible trials, yet somehow they’re one of the most cheerful people you know? They smile so warmly and the light that glows from within them, is so bright that it washes over everyone in the room.
They have made daily deposits into their kindness account and it can no longer be contained. It compounds so greatly that they have more than they can use and it spills over to those around them.
Which person do you recognize in yourself?
Do you notice that the way you speak to your spouse is much different now, than when you met?
Are you mindful of your tone, of the words you choose, of the way that you respond?
Kindness is a habit. And you, more than anyone else, get to reap the rewards by enjoying the love YOU get to feel.
Taking a good look at ourselves is the best way to begin. If you find yourself justifying or blaming someone else for your behavior, just notice it and don’t be hard on yourself.
Your brain is doing what it does best… it’s just trying to protect you. But take the first step by having some compassion for yourself.
Then let that compassion grow.
Once you begin to show kindness to you… your cup will start to fill, and very soon, you’ll have more to share.