“Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love.” –Lao Tzu
With this message I bring to a close the 2017 Anonymous Kindness class. Thanks for your participation!
I hope the class has encouraged you to think about what anonymity means to you in conjunction with performing acts of kindness. For me, I think the principle of anonymity, at least as it pertains to kindness, is honored when I quiet my ego. If I’m completing kind actions in order to be praised or to get credit, aspects of the kindness are diminished. Full anonymity ensures this won’t happen.
But I believe there are ways for me to be anonymous in principle even when I’m being seen. It involves doing kind things as a matter of character or personality, in a way that honors my “true self” and in a way that honors the “true self” of others. It’s like a meditative practice, I think, quieting the ego and letting my best behaviors just flow forth.
A past participant helped me better understand this when she told me this story, “I took time to listen to an elderly neighbor. Even though the neighbor knows me, the anonymous part for me here is that I consciously gave him my full attention and did not allow my thoughts to wander to my internal ‘to-do-list.’ I stayed in the present, in the moment.”
When present in this way, I stop keeping score — the “I made dinner, so you should do the dishes” kind of thinking. I find this very useful, especially in my closest relationships.
Wrapping up, if the anonymous kindness concept appeals to you, check out this kindness module I archived online a few years back. It provides folks a self-paced, three-themed kindness class. Note, there are several other kindness modules you’ll find linked there, too.
If you appreciate what Kind Living does to promote kindness, please consider making a small donation to help offset our expenses and demonstrate respect for our time. We, Fish Astronaut and I, have been thinking about ways to increase the tiny amount of money that comes in, imagining a future in which we are able to focus more of our attention to promoting kindness. But we’ll need to actually make some money in order to do that. We’ll be unveiling a couple of ideas in the next couple of weeks.
Meanwhile, as it pertains to our next kindness class, look for one based on the book “The Power of Kindness” to get started soon.
Thanks again for being involved!!