Kindness. It’s a Lifestyle.

Kindness. Kindless. Kind. Ness. Less.

There are so many words to describe the mental state of our beings right now — they flow like cold beer from a freshly pumped keg. Crispy, burnt, toasty, spent, flogged, fogged and dogged. All of us in some way or another are getting slapped around by COVID and its many new aliases. The river keeps churning even though the banks are swamped.

PANDEMIC — still hard to believe this is actually happening on our planet, and it seems as though we are all orbiting right back into another session of mask up and shut down. Part of this shutting down is a universal shortage of workforce. This isn’t a slow wind down, this is a blunt force stoppage. Hospitals are struggling to stay staffed. Police departments across the country are in short supply of officers. Educators, manufacturers, and construction crews are looking for workers; every retail store in every town in America has a ‘Now Hiring’ sign in the window. And then there is the hospitality industry. Hotels, resorts, restaurants, bars — all short staffed and struggling to write next week’s schedule. And all of this workforce struggle coming at a time when America is ready to get out and party, turn up the music and let the good times roll — it’s summertime for God’s sake!

COVID FATIGUE is not just limited to the folks having to go to work each day. It has settled in the hearts and minds of everyone. Folks who haven’t worked in a long time are saddled with all of this just like those of us trying to make it to work each day and keep the plates spinning. It is a part of the dozens of commerce interactions we all have in the course of the daily trek through our urban lives.

The end and rising result of all of this is a growing hostility in how we treat one another. How could it not happen, with steamy masks making a comeback and health concerns mounting as variants get more intuitive? We are frickin’ tired of this shit — enough is enough, right?

At the beginning and the end, all of us still have control of one thing -—we can choose to be kind. It’s free, you don’t need a membership card, no training, no on-line courses. It’s a conscious choice to lean into kindness and make a difference in someone, or in many people’s lives, throughout the course of your day. Teach your kids, demand this of your partner and your friends — we need this now more than ever in our lives. It’s a solo effort when you alone are practicing this, it’s a movement when more get involved.

A wise person said “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about.” That has never been more accurate. Be kind. And demand it of everyone around you. And when we as a planet of oxygen-using and so often abusing humans start leaning into kindness as our means and method of communication, good things will come on a grip of levels.

Big love.

DQ