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Kindness is a massive part of happiness. 
This is the third blog in the series taken from my recently published book ‘Get Happy!’ Each blog consists of the page from the book and then a bit more explanation and background to the thinking behind it. 
Part of what I do is that, as well as being a Mindfulness practitioner and a Hypnotherapist and student of the beautiful Law of Attraction, I am a Reiki practitioner too. Reiki is a form of hands-on healing and it’s awesome and it’s magic and I love it. 
Reiki has a set of ideals. There are five reiki ideals and each one asks you to do something “just for today” and that’s the important bit, “just for today,” don’t put pressure on yourself to go past today. So, for example, “Just for today I will let go my anger.” “Just for today I will let go my worries.” So this page from my book is about one of the ideals. 
“Hello there. I’m going to talk about the Reiki ideals today. There are five of them in total and they are all incredibly simple, yet incredibly wise. The one I am going to share with you today is: ‘I show kindness to all living things. Just for today, I show kindness to all living things.’ 
We have touched on kindness before and we will doubtless touch on it many more times. Kindness is a key component of happiness - kindness to other people, kindness to yourself, kindness to all living things. I used to be the kind of person who wouldn’t think twice about squishing an ant or treading on a spider. Whether I was willing to admit it at the time, that was mostly out of a vague kind of fear or dislike for little creepy crawly things. Then I was taught the ideals and gradually I realised that life is life. My decision as a big human being to squish something littler than me was not a good one. Now I go out of my way to keep everything alive. Tissues and glasses and pieces of paper are employed to move ants and bugs and spiders, to allow them to continue on their journey safely. Because who am I to decide that something doesn’t deserve to live in safety, just because I am bigger and have the ability to squish them? Keep that in mind today. Don’t squish things that are smaller than you, whether it’s a bug or a person. Thanks.” 
Kindness is a huge component of happiness. Kindness to allow people to be who they are. Kindness to not squish a bug or not squish a person. And very simple kindness in every day, saying kind things and doing kind things, biting your tongue when something unkind comes into your mind. Instead of saying it, bite your tongue and stop yourself from saying the unkind thing because, honestly, what does that achieve? What does saying the unkind thing achieve? It makes someone else feel small. You squish the other person. And probably start some form of argument or disagreement, but at the very least you make someone else feel rubbish. 
I do quite a lot of work in schools. I run a four-week programme in schools where I go into a primary school one day a week for four weeks. On each of those days I spend half an hour with each year group that I am working with in the school. 
In week three I talk to the children about kindness and I tell them that it’s a massive part of happiness and that actually the kinder they are, the more kind things they say and the more kind things they do, generally the happier a person they will be. 
Then I do this exercise with them, where I ask them if they can say anything kind about someone else in the class, and they are really, really a bit backwards in coming forwards to start with. So a couple of them will put up their hands and I’ll ask them and generally they will say something like, “Oh, Rhianna is my best friend.” Or “Josh is the best friend ever because he plays with me at playtime.” 
So then I will go over to Josh and I will say, “Now, Josh, how do you feel hearing that said about you about how kind you are…” how nice you are or how funny you are or how supportive you are or how caring you are or whatever has been said about Josh. And I tell you something; the smile on Josh’s face will be immense. It will be immense. 
And, largely, the child I’m asking will say, “Happy. That makes me feel really proud or good or happy.” Awesome. And then I will go back to the original child that has said how great Josh is and I will ask them how they feel knowing that they have just put that massive smile on Josh’s face. And they have got a massive smile too and their smile is immense and they say, “Happy” or “Proud” or “I feel good about myself. I’m so glad I said that.” 
The effect is amazing. Honestly, within the first couple of children saying stuff almost every child in the class will have their hand up, because they are absolutely desperate to be that one that says something nice about someone else and get that lovely feeling back that they have said something nice about someone else. 
And it’s ace. And I completely love it and it just ends the session with such a high and they all think they are all wonderful, which is brilliant. 
But do we take the time to say it to each other? Not very often, do we? Not very often. 
So that is my challenge for you. Whenever you read this blog, I want you to go out of your way to be kind. I want you to go out of your way this week to say as many kind things as you possibly can and do as many kind things as you possibly can. At work, at home, wherever it is, say and do it, whether it is people you know or complete strangers, go out of your way to be kind, because I tell you what, the effect you will have on that other person is potentially immense. And if you take the time to notice the effect that whatever you have done or said has had on that other person, you will feel so warm and fuzzy yourself, knowing that you have helped someone else to feel good. There genuinely is no other feeling like it. 
It is amazing, awesome and ace, obviously ace. 
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