Thursday, November 13, 2014

Envy AND Kindness: What a Combo!


Pictures from Clip Art

The NaBloPoMo writing prompt for today is, "What is the one skill you see in other bloggers that you wish you had?"

At first thought, I was thinking perhaps in terms of finding the perfect word, as sometimes I find it a challenge, believe it or not given my intuition with words at times. I find that a number of bloggers whom I follow, particularly from India seem to be more adept at the English language than I am! I am truly amazed by their expansive vocabulary! ;)

Actually, I think I know what skill I most admire and covet from other bloggers: a number of these same bloggers whom I have encountered via blogging challenges are extremely gifted at writing fiction ('cause I primarily write nonfiction). For some reason unbeknownst to me, a lot of them just happen to be from India! ;)

I could name a reel of them (in no particular order): Vinodini Iyer, Shailaja Vishwanath, Nabanita Dhar, Nisha Sanjeev, Beloo Mehra, Meena Menon, Shilpa Garg, Nibha Gupta, Aathira Jim, Anmol Rawat, and some whom I have met more recently include Shalini Nair, Vinitha Dileep, Sheethal Susan Jacob, Inderpreet Kaur Uppal, and Pixie.

Did I miss any others? You perhaps? I am likely remiss in naming you all here. If so, PLEASE do let me know, i.e., those bloggers whom I have met and commented on your posts, and I will gladly add you to my list!

Though this isn't a skill of course, I am envious of the time zone most of these bloggers live in as they can and usually do post before me and receive (more) comments than mine as a result. Mine sometimes feel somewhat neglected at the end of the day. ;)

Today for the Write Tribe Bloggers challenge (http://writetribe.com/), the prompt happens to be World Kindness Day which I discovered about two weeks ago and meant to write about. Thus, I thought, could I somehow combine both topics, kill two birds with one stone kind-of-idea?

I used to have a daily practice of taking action on committing one good deed a day, no matter how big or small. Even the simplest gesture like a smile or a greeting may brighten someone's day: you'd be surprised. However, I haven't consciously been aware lately of doing a good deed on a regular basis like I used to. And I have no idea why.

Regardless the reason, with the approaching Christmas season not to mention this cold front we have been experiencing the past few days is certainly a good time and an easy one to remember to perform kind deeds. Whether at work or elsewhere, kindness is appreciated and well deserved. To do so anonymously is even better ideally, yet at times that may prove impossible.

One person who is the epitome of kindness in the community is a local Vancouverite named Brock Tully. Brock co-founded a nonprofit organization, 'Kindness Foundation of Canada' and also 'Kindness Rocks in Schools,' a program to prevent bullying and abuse. He also initiated the annual 'World Kindness Concert' featuring many local musicians/singers performing on the theme of kindness. And Brock has also written a number of unique books, some with themes of kindness and joy woven in short prose - his original thoughts - amongst whimsical drawings.

Everyone who meets Brock is touched by his warmth and humour as well as his exuberant, infectious energy. He truly is an inspirational one-of-a-kind guy (pardon the pun as that just came out of me). ;) Read more about this wonderfully inspiring man here, http://brocktully.com/.

Now, getting back to you! How best can you act in a kind way towards others, today or any day? Truly, I think every day should be World Kindness Day, don't you? What a different world we would live in if that were the case! ;)

What kind deed can I offer - you too! - that will benefit others, even one person? A pure in-the-moment gesture as otherwise it may feel like forced kindness, if you know what I mean. (Ah, and I just realized by acknowledging some of you, that this is in fact, a kind deed in itself. That was by happenstance.)

Would you agree with the latter: is there such a thing as forced kindness when it comes to a good deed? And what makes you think so or not?

By the way, just curious readers: Do you prefer the title as above or "Envy AND Kindness? What a Combo! (I was too tired to think through this properly.)

This post is linked to Write Tribe Bloggers and Ultra Blog Challenge.

37 comments:

  1. Elly - don't ever think your posts go unnoticed because of the time difference. We enjoy them no matter when they pop up. Regarding your challenge to be kind to one another, we always need to hear this - thank you

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    1. Thanks Carol, I appreciate your kind words. :) <3

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  2. For me, kindness could be as simple as brightening somebody's day with a smile. Of course, there are many ways of being useful to people with the intention of being kind.
    I do manage read most of your posts...don't I? Of course at times I would be missing them, but sooner or later I catch up ;)

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    1. I so agree Vinodini about the smile and that can in fact, make a huge difference in someone's life. And yes, that may be one of the quickest and easiest of course! ;) I wasn't judging you in not reading my blog, and truly appreciate that you do when you can. :) <3

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  3. For me kindness is something about which we don't have to brag. It comes from the heart.It becomes second nature for a person.It cannot be kept in reserve for the kindness day. What is your opinion Elly?

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    1. Oh I so hear you and agree with you wholeheartedly Usha. I think there is a greater quality if-you-will if done anonymously. I have done that at times and it has given me great satisfaction which it should. And I think it had become second nature until somewhat recently...not sure what happened. <3

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  4. First of all thanks Elly :)

    You know if I had to answer the same question, I'd say ,among many other things, I'd like to have the simplicity and authenticity of your voice, the voice which comes across as I read your posts :)

    Coming to the point about kindness, I think sometimes it is forced while at times it comes naturally..We are but humans...So it happens...I find it easy to be kind to some people while I need to put efforts to be kind to others...Its a process, as long as our conscience is clear, I think we are alright....

    And yes whenever possible small deeds of kindness do make days better..

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    1. You're welcome Nabanita! ;) Oh, you mean the skill? ;) Well, that's very kind of you to say so Nabanita; however, I think we all have our unique voice that comes out: you did read my blog post on that recently... Yes, sometimes being kind is more natural than other days if due to societal and/or self-pressure; however, coming from the heart is most ideal. I appreciate your honesty Nabanita: that is a voice unto itself! <3

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  5. As we grow up, being kind to those who are not so kind to us takes practice. I've always envied my Mom for her constant good mood and kind nature, no matter what. I've found it is a matter of practice, to be kind at all times. Or at least not be unkind.

    :)

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    1. Yes for sure Vidya. Perhaps it's like a meditation as your Mom seems to indicate! ;) <3

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  6. O yes, Elly, you have been so very kind of mentioning me and so many other bloggers. Thank you! It is so sweet of you really. And I agree with the sentiment that if a kind gesture or deed feels somewhat forced it isn't really kind to begin with. It should come spontaneously. But yes, sometimes we all need to be more mindful of how we are behaving toward others - and that in itself can help us become more kind. Don't you think so? Lovely post.

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    1. You're welcome Beloo: you and the others deserve it! ;) Ah, that's an interesting comment: if forced, not kind to begin with! Hmmm, I wonder what the consensus is on that. ;) I agree it should be spontaneous. Being mindful can indeed help us to become more kind I would think! ;) Glad you enjoyed my post. ;) <3

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  7. U made me blush with tht compliment... indeed its very kind of you to say that :)

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    1. You're welcome Mina: you and the others deserve it! :) <3

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  8. I agree everyday should be kindness day. Atleast one act needs to be done without any selfish motive. I feel most acts of kindness are done on the go, without much thinking or planning. It's when the heart says do it, you do it.

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    1. Yes, when practiced daily, it does make a difference to others as well as yourself. Spontaneous acts of course are the best! ;) <3

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  9. completely agree that everyday should be kindness day. allocating one day to be kind seems weird to me! :D

    And fiction - agree with the list of people you have added - they are all fabulous story tellers..

    Oh and I write fiction too - though I may not be as good as the rest.. but I try! :)

    And thank you for introducing Brock to us. heading over to his place right away! :)

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    1. It is strange isn't it to only have one day dedicated to kindness; however, I think it's just bringing more awareness to it, kind of like Christmas! ;) Yes, a great group of storytellers. My apologies that I forgot you Pixie! Obviously. you were one of the newbie fiction bloggers I met. I will add your name to my list. Thanks for letting me know! ;) <3

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  11. I enjoyed your post about kindness, Elly.

    It does take a conscious effort at times, though and like being grateful and positive, I need to practice it more. Not that I'm a mean person but I can be here in my own little world and get caught up in my own agenda.

    And I agree about all the great bloggers from India. They are the best and such lovely people, too! I feel fortunate to be part of Write Tribe, such a supportive and friendly group.

    From your fellow Canadian, Cathy

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    1. Thanks 'Canadian Cathy.' ;) I think most people can practice kindness more, myself included! ;) Yes, love those bloggers too and like you, feel extremely fortunate to be part of WT as I feel the same as you: they are a lovely and kind bunch, aren't they? ;) <3

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  12. I think this is a beautiful post, Elly! And how frank you have been about kindness. Lovely! I also think the kind of kindness that makes you feel happy, either by receiving it or giving it, is the best kind there is. Very happy to be featured in your post, Elly. Thank you for that!

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    1. Thanks Shailaja, though I wouldn't necessarily say 'beautiful!' ;) However, I will accept your kindness! ;) And you bring up a valid point in that giving and receiving are part of a cycle,and there cannot be a giver without a receiver and likewise. ;) I am happy to 'feature' you Shailaja as I find you a brilliant writer of fiction. :) <3

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  13. Thanks a lot for the mention, Elly! You made my day. You are so kind and generous! I believe, small acts of kindness make a big difference. Sometimes, even a smile from a stranger can be so uplifting. Being kind towards those who hurt us is tough, but not impossible. So, yes, forced kindness is needed sometimes!

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    1. You're welcome Shilpa! :) Yes, small acts of kindness can for sure make a big difference in other peoples' lives, even as simple as a smile. And I can understand forced kindness at times too! ;) <3

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  14. Now you are being too kind for having mentioned me in your list.
    I believe any deed that is a forced action loses its purpose. However, we begin social animals, in order to keep peace . doing it once a while is ok. If you make it a habit then it only speaks low of you.
    Time lag or no, you are a thought - provoking blogger.
    Keep goinv friend! !!!

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    1. Am I now? ;) Forced kindness can usually be felt from another; however, like you say, sometimes it is ok...it depends on the circumstances; see Shilpa's comment above. ;) Thanks for the compliment Nisha. I appreciate that! :) <3

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  15. Thanks for the mention, Elly! I'm honored to see my name up there. And yes, you are too kind :) Little acts of kindness go a long way!

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    1. My sincere apologies for my belated response as I somehow missed it. I do so enjoy your writing Aathira so you deserve honourable mention! ;) <3

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  16. Thanks for the mention, Elly. Truly an honour to be mentioned by you. That is so kind of you, indeed.
    You have a unique voice and I love reading your posts. It is like having a conversation face to face with you. Not all bloggers blog the way you do. That kind of an interaction makes the reader feel valued!
    Random acts of kindness is the best, so is the small gestures. Because that defines the person as kind one. Because that is his/her nature. But forced kindness isn't bad either if it serves the purpose of bringing joy or helping the other.
    Very good post you got there, Elly!! :)

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    1. My apologies for my belated reply Vinitha. It's a pleasure to pay tribute to you and others like you who write such wonderful posts, especially fiction. Thank YOU! ;) And thanks for your feedback on kindness as I have the ability to see both sides so I agree on both points you make! ;) <3

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  17. Thank you so much for the mention Elly! :) Highly appreciated.

    For me kindness, can be a smile, a gesture or any simple act which can make the life of another person a bit better and make their day. And here you made my day, with your kindness of this mention. <3

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    1. You are so welcome Sheethal and my apologies for not noticing your remarks earlier! :) Yes, kindness can be such a small and simple act like a smile: it's so amazing when you think of that! And I'm glad I made your day with my brief act of kindness by mentioning your name, though you deserve it! :) <3

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  18. Oh wow! :)
    Thank you so much for mentioning my name. I really feel honored. I feel great.
    Kindness can be anything. The moment you make someone smile from the heart, you are kind. :)

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    1. Oh well Anmol, it's about time you saw your name and responded! ;) (I'm teasing you, thus the wink!) Though I don't always agree with your writing - so hard to digest sometimes - you are an amazing writer so I think you deserve credit. Yes, love the fact that even as simple a genuine smile can make someone's day. I imagine I made yours? ;) <3

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  19. I somehow missed reading this post earlier... perhaps explains you missing out on my name in there ;)
    Just kidding, dear... but I am glad you love and envy us indian writers thus :) i personally admire your vivacity and approach to life :)

    And i really find your title catchy and very interesrting :)

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    1. Ah, I think it's because I see you as mainly a non-fiction writer which is why it's not on this post, but another! ;) Yes, the Indian bloggers I have met online have in some cases better proficiency it seems with the English language than myself - how can that be?! - including a propensity for writing fascinating fiction! :) <3

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