Kindness is about showing up, unbidden, and doing whatever there is to be done. Kindness requires us to listen, to be present, to stretch in ways that may be uncomfortable, unfamiliar, risky, new. Kindness asks that we give of ourselves, generously, and without thought of reward or repayment. And yet there are invisible dividends for even the simplest good deed, be it a smile offered, a hand extended, or a word of support given. Any act of kindness fortifies our connection with the person we have touched. Kindness, as our spiritual teachers remind us, is our true nature, our own untrammelled, always-available route to an inner sense of well-being. Being kind may not make us successful or rich or heroic, but being kind does make us a little happier and someone else’s day a little better — and really, that’s saying something. Kindness is our gift to one another, to the world, and to our own best selves.

-Katrina Kenison