Because of Valentine’s Day, February is often thought of as a month of love. Here at Stand and Cheer Co, we want to take action.
How can we join love with action? We can show and practice kindness!
Kindness is love in action.
Empathy can be described as love.
We can teach our kids empathy by first teaching them to identify their own feelings. Then we can have them look beyond that to consider what others might be feeling or experiencing. We can set an example by modeling empathy ourselves. Be willing to listen and to describe back to kids what we think they may be feeling. Tell them why we performed an act of kindness. Lastly, we can explain how their behavior affected or may affect others.
Kindness can be described as compassion.
Kindness goes beyond empathy. It takes those feelings and uses them to make decisions and go into action. With empathy, we have an inner understanding of another person’s experience. We feel with the person. We take on the emotions of the other person and feel those emotions as if they are our own. With kindness, we show compassion by taking action to help others.
Let’s look at an example.
In class at school, someone asks a question about the assignment. Another classmate mocks the question and calls the asker “stupid”. Others laugh or chuckle. Some say, “Yeah, duh! It’s easy!” If you are feeling empathy, you understand how the question asker is feeling in the moment. You understand they are embarrassed, wishing they hadn’t asked the question in the first place, and maybe feeling like they’re the only one not understanding the assignment. While empathy is a feeling you have, you can show kindness by stating out loud, “I was wondering the same thing!” or telling the class, “That’s not nice. Don’t make fun of them!” Kindness is taking those empathetic feelings and putting them into action. Empathy can help us feel connected to the person. Kindness helps to fill a need.
We need both empathy and kindness when we STAND.
These two traits are a powerful combination we can use to defeat bullying. Practicing empathy stretches a person from a “me” mentality to a “we” state of mind. We need to be continually learning and practicing empathy. Then we need to take those feelings and translate them into acts of kindness.
We can be kind in our homes, in our schools, and in our communities. If someone shows us an act of kindness, we can pay it forward. We can create an environment of kindness that will help to eliminate bullying.
Celebrate the month of love by completing 30 acts of kindness in February.
We want you to take our challenge to show kindness and leadership in your family, school, and community.
How many acts of kindness can you complete this month?
Will you accept the challenge? Will you show love?