Why wouldn’t you be? Perhaps you like inflicting pain on yourself, which would make you a masochist. But then again, masochists find joy and sexual gratification through pain and humiliation. So, this a psychological profile I will not get into since an in-depth exploration and explanation of masochism is beyond my abilities and qualifications. So, what would be another reason for not being kind to yourself? Neglect? Laziness? Indifference? Low self-esteem? All the above? Or maybe a mix of all those bitter ingredients? I am equating not taking care of yourself to not being kind to yourself. I believe they are similar if not the same thing. If you care about yourself, you will take care of yourself and you will be kind to yourself. I believe that with all my heart.

The question that bothers my soul is, if you are not kind to yourself, then who will be? I mean no one is going to do that job for you. Unfortunately, you cannot count unequivocally on others to be kind to you. The people that love you, they will be kind to you, that is a near certainty. However, there is high likelihood that they will not be as kind to you as you’d want them to be. They will not be as kind to you as you will be to yourself. Please understand, I am not saying other people’s love and attention are inadequate. I am simply stating that they might not love you the way you want to be loved or be as kind as you’d want them to be. There is a difference between what we want, what we wish for and what we get. Hopefully the difference is so thin that it is invisible to the naked eye.

Now, what about the people that don’t have any special emotional attachment to you? What about acquaintances? What about strangers? Will they be kind to you? Will they make that effort? Some would even consider that being kind isn’t necessary or they might see it as a luxury. Some would go as far as asking themselves the reason they should bother being kind to you. Unfortunately, there are people who think that way. Your wanting to be treated kindly will not necessarily make it happen. Once again, I m not being negative. It is a fact of life that wishful thinking doesn’t always materialize. If you are lucky, people will be kind to you. Reciprocity does exist and usually, when you are kind to people, they respond with the same degree of kindness, for the most part.

People don’t have to be kind to you, technically and yes I am aware how bad this sounds but it doesn’t matter. One person has a final say in how kind they are to you. That person is YOU. As corny and repetitive as it sounds, it all starts and ends with you. Being kind to yourself is entirely up to you. Being kind to yourself is the first step to being kind to others as well. When you are kind to yourself, you feel good. Your soul, mind and body are happy, the chemistry in your brain and whole body flows swimmingly, your mood is delightful, you feel at ease and it shows. The positive energy that emanates from you is received by others and trust me, they are grateful even if they don’t say anything. When you are used to being kind to yourself, that exhilarating feeling is contagious, and you want to pass it around. You know how great it feels when you are kind to yourself and you want to see that light and energy in other people, therefore, you become kind to others, you want to be kind to others. Positive energy is like any other energy: it needs and wants to spread. That is a fact.

Being kind to yourself is crucial. It is one of those things that has no downside or a disadvantage. You want to find one? Please go ahead, I’ll wait! You won’t find any. Simply because there isn’t any. Being kind to yourself is about self-love, it is about self-respect, it is about self-worth. Being kind to yourself is about appreciation and the most important appreciation of all: self-appreciation. Please keep in mind, self appreciation, self love, self respect and self worth are selfish choices. They are the foundation of who you are. They are the land on which you build your temple. They are the bricks and mortar that help raise that inner fort where invaders aren’t welcome. It isn’t about not communicating with others. It is about getting to know yourself, before you can share your gifts and joy and kindness with others. It all starts with you. Being selfish isn’t a bad thing, it only becomes bad once you only acknowledge your worth and forget other people exist! Being inconsiderate is selfish.

Do not wait for others to be kind to you. Their kindness is optional, your own isn’t. Start by being kind to yourself. Take care of yourself, look after yourself, physically and mentally. This hyper-extra busy world will fool all of us into believing we don’t have time to do anything. Yet, you do have time. It doesn’t take hours to do something you love, it just takes discipline and organization. It doesn’t take days to exercise, to cook, to have a beer or wine with your people. You can always find time to read, write, watch movies, go for walks, etc.

You can always choose to make sure you don’t belittle or humiliate yourself. Do not hurt yourself please, it will not solve any problem that you have. Do not allow others to invade your space when they have nefarious intentions. Remember that you matter. Remember that you have value. Remember to be kind to yourself. Remember to be polite to yourself, to give compliments to yourself. It is about self love, not self aggrandizement. Remember to be hard on yourself, not too hard, as well when you mess up, that is another way of caring. Remember to smile at yourself. Remember to laugh at yourself and remember to love yourself.

Kindness starts with self love.

Just one man’s opinion.

Now, smile, be kind to yourself and go on with your day.

Freeman. B

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