About a week ago the people in my county received a very different type of emergency communication. I'm in a popular hurricane area so those who signed up for emergency text messages are no stranger to them. However, even when we were evacuated due to Hurricane Irma we didn't receive anything like this.
The first line of the text message was “be kind.” That took me aback and caused me to laugh a little. Be kind sounded a little like what our parents might’ve said to us as we were going off to kindergarten or--more appropriately--middle school.
Most of us probably think of ourselves as nice people. Being told to be kind seemed like a no-brainer. But being kind is more than just being nice.
I was listening to Dave Ramsey this morning and he told everyone to calm down. Our misbehavior is largely due to fear and fear stamps out hope, something we all really need now. He, too, talked about being kind.
If you're a business leader in the community, it's even more important you let kindness rule. One reason is that kindness restores hope. The other is that people want to do business with those they know, like, and trust. If you remember kindness first, you'll be more likable and trustworthy.
Kindness is a lot more nuanced than “nice.” Here are several ideas on how you can be kind to the people in your life and spread that in your community.
Finally, encourage others to follow suit. You can do so by posting what you're doing every day to be kind. You can journal about it or you can share stories about what happens when you exercise your “be kind” muscle.
It sounds a little hokey at first but there are a lot of people who are extremely afraid right now. Being kind can have ripple effects on the community. When many people feel good about things that are happening, they are more likely to have hope in the future. Hope (and faith) is what we need to drive the economic revitalization we’ll need after this pandemic is over.
Christina R. Metcalf (formerly Green) is a marketer who enjoys using the power of story and refuses to believe meaningful copy can be written by bots. She helps chamber and small business professionals find the right words when they don’t have the time or interest to do so.
Christina hates exclamation points and loves road trips. Say hi on Twitter or reach out on Facebook.