Tips and reminders to help make this world a kinder place
With what seems like the whole world being understaffed, people are working harder than ever to get your coffee order right, deliver your lunch on time, keep the checkout line moving and get you in and out of your appointment without delay.
People are enduring stressful jobs, worry about finances, illness, difficult relationships, overwhelming responsibilities, and the unknowns of the future. You never know when you may encounter someone that is carrying a heavy emotional load. Simple acts of kindness can make a big difference in someone’s life. It’s not always easy to be kind. It takes effort sometimes, especially when faced with a frustrating situation. Here are a few tips and tricks for when you feel your patience wearing thin.
Waiting is never easy. Not in a line, not for a phone call, not in a waiting room. It’s common to feel frustrated when an appointment isn’t moving as quickly as you would like. The ability to remain calm when feeling frustrated (aka: patience), doesn’t always come easy. It takes practice and reminders. Sometimes you may have to remind yourself to exercise patience. Here are a couple things you can do when you feel your patience fading.
- Identify your triggers. Next time you lose your patience, or feel like you are going to lose your patience, stop and think about what was happening just before you lost your patience?
- Practice mindful breathing. Watch Dr. Alberto Nacif describe square breathing and how it can help calm you in times of anxiety or frustration.
- Get your sleep. When a child skips their nap, they are more likely to act out and have a harder time managing their feelings. Adults are similar. When sleepy, feelings of anger and frustration can feel more intense and rise much more quickly.
Make eye contact.
We spend so much time communicating over a screen or a phone that when we are standing in front of another person it can be difficult or awkward remembering how to behave. Make eye contact with the person in front of you. This let them know they have your attention. Even behind a mask, your smile can be felt by the person across from you.
Empathy really starts with curiosity. When you seek to understand another person’s feelings, situation and perspective, you’re view of that person that was so frustrating to you may shift. When you master empathy, getting along with others – from your most loved one to a complete stranger – happens much more naturally. So, when you feel like you are losing your cool with the person in front of you, try asking yourself questions like “how would I feel if I were them right now?”
Live a compassionate life.
When we set out to live with compassion the hope is that others will be inspired to do the same, so when you are the one carrying that heavy load, may you also be met with the same compassion you have given.
There really isn’t a bad time to be kind. Kindness is a gift that you can give to others, but also to yourself. When you are treated with kindness you will feel good both physically and mentally. But, you will also feel good when you treat others with kindness.