I mean, are you okay? How are you really doing? And yes I am expecting an honest answer but it is rather interesting how half the time I either get no answer to that or not so much of an honest answer but the cultural “fine”.

These days I have been intentionally sending messages of “Are you okay?” to some of my intimate circle and I can tell you it has been very interesting. I actually ended up forcing some responses where someone would ignore my question and just engage me in a conversation. However, I am not one to easily give up so I end up going back to the question I asked “You still have not answered me: ‘Are you okay?’”

I wonder how many of you do make the time to ask “Are you okay?” even to yourself. Do you even mean it when you do, do you actually take time to check yourself whether you’re fine, satisfied with whatever is happening in and around you? Do you have chair moments? Obviously this is also extended to our loved ones when we check up on them I think one of the most profound questions to ask is “Are you okay?”

A lot of the times people are afraid to ask because of the kind of response they might get. What if he/she is not okay what then do I do? Simple, really just say “Everything is going to be okay” and depending on how close you relate with the person you could extend a warm hug of affirmation and have them breath in and out while at it.

I think we take it for granted that we are all facing something. We are all dealing with one thing or another and while some of us like to openly talk about our challenges or issues some really do not like to share. Just because someone does not share does not mean they are not going through the most, that is why we ought to be kind to one another at all times. We are already going through enough on our own so when we do meet or engage in anyway let’s not fuel the frustration or tension. Life would be so much easier if only we appreciate the kind gestures.  All these no matter how little they are have significant impact on how we relate with one another.

What is kindness? It is the quality of being friendly, generous and considerate. It is a gesture of goodwill, affection, warmth, gentleness, tenderness, concern and care. Although kindness has almost become unfashionable lately particularly among those climbing the corporate ladder -you often hear of stories of people ruthlessly dealing with others in the name of getting the bag. Kindness is teachable and also contagious. Research suggests the people who are kind and compassionate are more satisfied with their lives, have better physical and mental health, and have stronger relationships. Being kind and compassionate can help other people, and make you feel good too. With all the ruthlessness surrounding us you can imagine how much more we would appreciate even the smallest of kind gestures. We need it!

Below are benefits of kindness:

  • Improved happiness
  • Good mental health
  • A stronger immune system
  • Reduced anxiety, stress & depression
  • Improved relationships
  • Longer life

I am learning to check up on me & I am learning to check up on my people. With time I hope to be the stranger who will slide a note for you under the door in the washroom to tell you that it is going to be okay. Let’s spread a little more kindness yeah and it starts with you.

By Lerato Charlotte Letsoso| Email: leratokayise@gmail.com