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What the Wisest People Do in Times of Challenge

April 10, 2018


"What wisdom can you find that is greater than kindness?"

-  Jean-Jacques Rousseau


Week 15 of our challenge has arrived, and in many regions of the country it failed to bring with it the Spring weather that we all long for. Extended winter temperatures and cloudy skies are often accompanied by a case of the grumpy-mumbles. You know, it well; the moment that frustration bubbles over the pot that was stirred perhaps a bit too much. Inside you're ready to erupt on the next person, or thing ("That is NOT what I said, Siri!" ) that pushes the boundary a bit too far. 



We've all been there. We've said something we couldn't take back, rolled an eye or two so far up in our head that they almost got stuck, put a little too much umph on a statement that didn't need any to begin with, said something under our breath that was purposefully just audible enough so it could be heard but not deciphered. The grumpy-mumbles.


So what action is on the other end of the spectrum?


What would the wisest among us choose?


They would opt to be kind. Every single time.


Every single time? Yes. Every time. Before I tell you why, let's make sure we're all approaching this from the same definition of the word.


What does it mean to be kind? According to Dictionary.com, kind can be an adjective or a noun. For our purposes, we'll use the adjective definition(s):

  1. of a good or benevolent nature or disposition

  2. having, showing, or proceeding from benevolence

  3. indulgent, considerate, or helpful; humane

  4. mild; gentle; clement

  5. loving; affectionate



Let's focus on the most common usage, definitions 1 & 2, which both focus on goodwill (benevolence) as their anchor and focal point. 


In times of strife or challenge, in moments where someone has vigorously stirred the pot to the point of agitation, there we stand at the fork in the road with two options to travel:

  1. Fury Road: i.e. tell them where to go and what train to catch to get there