My very first hash-tag was #KindnessRipples. The more I practice being open, thoughtful, and kind, the
more I feel the hashtag to be relevant and true.
One thing I want to make clear is that it is not easy to
practice kindness. The more it is practiced, however, the easier it becomes.

Like everything in life, training our minds to be open and kind takes practice. It isn’t something I was
immediately able to turn on. In the beginning, I would get caught up in my own ego, finding myself
losing track of being kind as I replied to negative, ignorant, or mean comments on social media and in
life. When we feel attacked, it is our natural response to lash back, yet that habit never helps guide us to
better understanding; for ourselves or the one who first struck at us.

With all that humanity has faced these past few years, emotions are running hot and patience has worn
out, leading to more aggression and even violence that we have all seen on viral tweets, posts, or in
person. What I had once thought was that the only way to be heard was to be louder, yet that is
incorrect. What I found was that the louder and more aggressive I became, the less likely someone was
to open up and communicate in a way that was a positive learning experience for all involved.

When I began stepping outside my own complaints and ego, trying to listen and relate, the more the
noise settled
. Not just within the topic or argument, but within my own mind. #Humility, as it turned
out, was one of the first tools to unlock my kindness. How can we be kind if we can’t, or refuse to,
relate? Truth is we can’t.

So, when I write this blog, I speak about this topic as a new way of life. Although it is challenging to show
kindness to those who aren’t doing the same to you (this DOES NOT APPLY TO TOXIC OR ABUSIVE
RELATIONSHIPS), it is a great way to diffuse a negative tailspin that drags your day and mind into anger
or sadness. When I truly listen, especially to those I disagree with, the more knowledge and wisdom I

The truth is that we don’t learn from those that agree with everything we say, just like we don’t improve
by staying in our comfort zone. Does that mean it is easier? Absolutely not, but I can honestly say that
the calmer and kinder I become, the more my daily life improves.

If this is a step you want to take, I will give some ways I have found to be helpful when starting a life-
long journey of breathing and living with kindness
. And yes, as far as I have come, I have a very long way
to go, but isn’t that part of the fun of any journey?

Tools I found helpful in becoming a kinder human being:

1.BREATHING: When you read a text that upsets you, our sympathetic nervous system kicks in. Our
heart pounds and we feel pain, anger, sadness… There is nothing wrong with feeling these
emotions, but before you react, take a few minutes to breathe. Slowing down our heart and
mind gives us time to analyze what we just heard or read. This allows us a moment of calm to
analyze both the message and our own reaction, creating a higher probability for us to respond
back with something that makes the other individual feel heard.

2. LISTENING: When we truly try to hear the other person, we open our mind. We don’t have to
agree, but why not listen? Even when someone says something foolish, there is still wisdom to
be found. Not in judgment of another, but in seeing life through a new lens and perspective.
The more we learn and are open to different beliefs, lifestyles, creeds, political leanings, and
anything we might not fully understand, the more knowledge and understanding of others and
ourselves we unlock.

3. DAILY PRACTICE: When I say daily, I mean with every breath and every thought. The only way we
can continually improve is to be aware of our thought processes. The only way we gain awareness
and strengthen a skill is with practice and dedication. The more it is practiced, the easier it
becomes. The goal is to eventually live every moment in kindness, something I hope to
accomplish in my lifetime.

4. SELF-AWARENESS: I have not been a nice person my entire life, and I have a long way to go to feel
justified in classifying myself as any sort of expert. Knowing myself, as well as my struggles,
frustrations, and triggers allowed me to analyze my thoughts in real-time. The deeper I
understood myself, the more I understood how I might react. That knowledge gave me the
power to choose a better path than my original.

5. KEEPING AN OPEN MIND: Perhaps the most difficult step was accepting that no matter how sure
we are, our perceptions of the world around us are not the same as others. Wanting to learn
from each experience demands we learn more. Therefore, a myopic view only enforces our own
beliefs and stifles our ability to react with kindness and understanding.

There is no secret step towards becoming a kinder and better person, but before I close out this blog
post, I do want to say that the most important ingredient is a desire to be better. What I do know is that
since I began a journey towards being kinder, my life has become brighter and more loving. I’m a
believer, and if you try, you just might find the same.


~Kirk Patrick Miller ✨

@Chaos2Cured (IG/Twitter/CH)

Mr. Kirk Patrick Miller is a professional speaker, mental health advocate, and radio personality. His book “Chaos to Cured” and his contact information can be found at www.chaos2cured.com

———————— Disclaimer ———————

Mr. Kirk Patrick Miller is not licensed to practice medicine. His opinions are not meant or intended as mental health advice or guidance of any kind. Should you need help, please reach out to a mental health professional. If it’s an emergency, please call 911. (Suicide hotline: 1-800-273-8255)

~Kirk Patrick Miller


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