Of Being Kind and Keeping Quiet! (#BestOf)

(the Best of) A Year of Being Kind, Thursday, May 12, 2016

I re-read this post, and reflected on it. On how countercultural it is to follow this advice. Really, not speaking up? Keeping quiet? Strange, but true.

Of Being Kind and Keeping Quiet!

Posted on May 14, 2014 by chaplaineliza

A Year of Being Kind blog – Tuesday, May 13, 2014

quiet--more you can hear

Of Being Kind and Keeping Quiet!

Ever get the feeling that you said too much? That you should have kept your mouth shut? That you would have been much better served if you had said nothing at all?

I got that message today, several times. Loud and clear!

First, as I met with a colleague, we had a regular, periodic meeting where we updated each other on the state of the workplace, the people we work with, and any coming events both of us need to be aware of. As we talked, I asked my colleague (an older and wiser person!) for some advice. And, I got some! Ears open, listen hard, and keep quiet! (It could very well have been “Be wise as serpents and innocent as doves,” but my co-worker did not say that. Not today, at least.)

Wise words. I listened to them, filed them away, and thanked my co-worker!

Again, later in the day, I ran into a friend of mine. We talked about a number of things. Lo and behold, I got the same (unsolicited) advice from my friend. Slightly puzzled, but still very much open to the advice, I considered what had been mentioned to me. Hmm.

After dinner, I went to a get-together. A group of friends and acquaintances met tonight near downtown. I greeted a good number of people I knew tonight. Including one person who told an interesting anecdote. She had taken a cab today, downtown. A work associate was in the cab with her. She was amazed to observe her associate tell the cabbie exactly how to drive. With great precision. Exactitude. And demanded that the cabbie comply.

As she watched the drama unfolding beside her, my friend felt something—inside of her—was the matter. Bubbling over. She didn’t know quite what it was, so she prayed. Asking God to help her calm down and stay in the moment. Not get all bent out of shape. She realized she was getting upset at how ridiculous her fellow rider was being. It was a victory for her (yay!). Previously, even a few years ago, she would have wanted to tell her associate exactly how ridiculous she thought their words and actions were! But now, it just stayed a want, a desire. Nothing came out of her mouth! Nothing that she might have wanted to take back. (Thank God!)

God, that’s three times today that You brought communication to my attention. Or rather, lack of communication. (I know, I know. “If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”) As I said before, these are wise words! God, please help me to listen, and follow them. Help me to be an active listener AND a responsive, caring person. One who doesn’t let her mouth flap in the wind. Wise words, indeed!

@chaplaineliza

(Suggestion: visit me at my blog: matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers– where I am doing a PEACE journey through Eastertide. #PursuePEACE. Thanks!)

(also published at ayearofbeingkind.wordpress.com .   @chaplaineliza And read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er – Thanks!)

Being Kind to Myself—Through Yoga

A Year of Being Kind blog – Thursday, December 11, 2014

yoga tree pose

Being Kind to Myself—Through Yoga

It has been a busy week. Rushing to and fro, getting ready, hustle bustle. I almost talked myself into skipping yoga today. Am I glad I didn’t!

My yoga instructor Ine is marvelous. She has been doing yoga for more than thirty years. And does she know how to instruct! She tells people that they should try their best, but not to get upset if your particular body doesn’t want to or isn’t able to do some of the yoga positions. And not to worry about it! Even if I am not able to do several yoga poses and positions this week, I am encouraged to continue to try. To strive to improve, but to know my body. And, not to cross the point of pain, of hurting when I stretch and move.

Ine’s wise words are applicable in so many areas in my life! If I need to improve in healthy eating, or in regular prayer and meditation, or in practicing patience, or any one of a dozen other areas . . . I can apply Ine’s simple yet effective idea.

I was talking with a newcomer to yoga today, after class. He’s fit and healthy, but had never done yoga before this month. I believe today was his third class, and he likes it very much. He mentioned to me that an hour and a half of hatha yoga makes him as worn out as a strenuous hour and a half bike ride. We both laughed at that.

But, isn’t that the way? I need to stretch and bend and do poses regularly. And as I do these poses and work on my core strength, cardio-vascular training and flexibility, it’s one of the kindest things I can possibly do for myself. Good health, better circulation, stronger core, easier mobility. What’s not to like about that?

Plus, if I look at things from a more Godly, spiritual perspective, it pleases God when I keep my body fit, in good health. Again, what is there not to like? And, God, thanks especially for Ine, a caring, loving instructor who is interested in every single person, no matter how “good” or “bad” they are at yoga.

@chaplaineliza

Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Questioning My Kindness Quotient?

A Year of Being Kind blog – Monday, July 14, 2014

BK be kind 1 Thess

Questioning My Kindness Quotient?

Today was a pretty average day, as far as typical days go. Nothing particular to write home about, unless I count email correspondence, several telephone calls, a couple of phone messages, a few conversations, and stops at a couple of businesses on the way home. Upon reflection, it does sound average to me.

Except—one of these interactions struck me as a bit uncomfortable. I stopped at a business later in the day, and asked a question about the transaction before I paid the bill. The cashier seemed a bit testy in response. As I completed the transaction, I noticed the coolness of the cashier, avoidance of eye contact, and minimum of chit-chat.

I reflected on that interaction, after dinner. I was wondering about it. Almost troubled, but not quite. (And that was interesting to me, too.) I replayed the words I said and the actions I took, in my mind. I didn’t find anything particularly disturbing in my words. I didn’t think I had been abrupt or mean in my attitude or my manner, either. Upon considerable reflection, I don’t think my words or actions were upsetting. At least, I don’t think so.

On second thought, it could have been something about the cashier. Something going on in their life, or a bad experience at work. Or even, a health concern for them or for a loved one. In other words, it might not have been about me, after all.

So, I may not have been a kind, loving, caring person, at least as far as this interaction on the way home is concerned. Or, contrariwise. As I said before, I am unsure whether others are keeping up their end of the social contract. But as long as I do my best, and keep my side of the street clean, I hope that will take care of my end of things.

A wise woman remarked a number of times (in my hearing) that “Ninety percent of what happens to you is none of your business.” Very true! I really appreciated her wise words. Now, alas, she has gone on to eternity. I want to be a good example of being kind and helping people. Why not try to keep my side of the street clean?

God willing, I’ll get an extended opportunity to continue trying to be kind, be helpful, and be of service. Thanks, God! Help me follow Your wish for me to be willing, honest and open.

@chaplaineliza

Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Of Being Kind and Keeping Quiet!

A Year of Being Kind blog – Tuesday, May 13, 2014

try to control, can't enjoy anything

Of Being Kind and Keeping Quiet!

Ever get the feeling that you said too much? That you should have kept your mouth shut? That you would have been much better served if you had said nothing at all?

I got that message today, several times. Loud and clear!

First, as I met with a colleague, we had a regular, periodic meeting where we updated each other on the state of the workplace, the people we work with, and any coming events both of us need to be aware of. As we talked, I asked my colleague (an older and wiser person!) for some advice. And, I got some! Ears open, listen hard, and keep quiet! (It could very well have been “Be wise as serpents and innocent as doves,” but my co-worker did not say that. Not today, at least.)

Wise words. I listened to them, filed them away, and thanked my co-worker!

Again, later in the day, I ran into a friend of mine. We talked about a number of things. Lo and behold, I got the same (unsolicited) advice from my friend. Slightly puzzled, but still very much open to the advice, I considered what had been mentioned to me. Hmm.

After dinner, I went to a get-together. A group of friends and acquaintances met tonight near downtown. I greeted a good number of people I knew tonight. Including one person who told an interesting anecdote. She had taken a cab today, downtown. A work associate was in the cab with her. She was amazed to observe her associate tell the cabbie exactly how to drive. With great precision. Exactitude. And demanded that the cabbie comply.

As she watched the drama unfolding beside her, my friend felt something—inside of her—was the matter. Bubbling over. She didn’t know quite what it was, so she prayed. Asking God to help her calm down and stay in the moment. Not get all bent out of shape. She realized she was getting upset at how ridiculous her fellow rider was being. It was a victory for her (yay!). Previously, even a few years ago, she would have wanted to tell her associate exactly how ridiculous she thought their words and actions were! But now, it just stayed a want, a desire. Nothing came out of her mouth! Nothing that she might have wanted to take back. (Thank God!)

God, that’s three times today that You brought communication to my attention. Or rather, lack of communication. (I know, I know. “If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”) As I said before, these are wise words! God, please help me to listen, and follow them. Help me to be an active listener AND a responsive, caring person. One who doesn’t let her mouth flap in the wind. Wise words, indeed!

@chaplaineliza

Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

(also published at ayearofbeingkind.wordpress.com Shortlink: