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What Does it Mean to be Kind?

KC-airportThe truth is that it can be very hard to be kind. We live complex and busy lives and most of the time we do not even notice when people are in distress for one reason or the other. We have our own issues and our own problems and we just want to get where we are going. It is not that we are unkind – we take care of our family and our friends and even contribute to others through engagement with a church or charity. The U.S. is still a country that has a high rate of volunteerism and we give lots of money every year. Does that suffice? I was waiting for a flight the other day and there was a young woman who was visibly upset but trying to keep it together. She would start to cry and force herself to stop. Then the sobs would come again. We all noticed but nobody said anything or did anything. What could be done? We all had our flights to catch and nobody really wanted to get engaged in this drama. That was when a uniformed man sat next to her and asked. He was a Major according to his insignia – Airborne. He asked what he could do to help – she looked like she could be his daughter. She said she was fine and he stated that he had seen a lot of people in the worst moments of their life and she was anything but fine. The dam broke at that point – she had flown to KC to meet her fiancé as a surprise and found him in a compromising position. For the next 30 minutes he sat with her and just let her cry and talk. Finally, it was time for her plane to leave and she thanked him for listening and commented that she was lucky his plane left after hers. He laughed and said “my plane left 40 minutes ago – I figured you didn’t need somebody else to abandon you – I can catch the next one”. Now THAT is kindness!

— From our friends at Armada Executive Intelligence