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The Kindness Project

Too often kindness is relegated to a random act performed only when we’re feeling good. But an even greater kindness (to ourselves and others) occurs when we reach out even when we aren’t feeling entirely whole. It’s not easy, and no one is perfect. But we’ve decided it’s not impossible to brighten the world one smile, one kind word, one blog post at a time. To that end, a few of us writers have established The Kindness Project, starting with a series of inspirational posts. We post the second Wednesday of every month. 

The lovely Carolina Valdez Miller asked me to join this project and I was thrilled to. I think this is an amazing group of writers involved and an important message–KindnessWhat could be a better topic? And also, when Carol asks me to do something? I pretty much do it, ’cause she’s the best! And we’re total goofballs. If ever there was an inspiration to be kind. It would be her <3

I used to work for a call center.

I answered somewhere around 150-200 calls a day. I didn’t keep the job for long, but it taught me something really valuable. The value of treating each person as if it was the first call you’ve ever had.

Each person that called up had no idea that the last person I talked to screamed at me and called me names. They didn’t know I only had three hours of sleep the night before. They didn’t know I hated my job and wished every day I could get another. Some days it took all my strength not to treat them like it was the first time I’d been asked the same question FIFTY times.

Everyone has bad days. I get asked the same questions at work all the time, but I tell myself, this is someone new and they deserve my respect. 

The real lesson I learned is not to let my own crap affect how I treat someone else. I’m not saying to be fake, no one likes that, but I think taking the time to remember that everyone is an individual and even if you’ve had the same conversation with someone else before, it doesn’t mean that the person you’re talking to now will react the same. 

This is something I struggle to remember, but I think is so important. It’s like a bunch of dominoes. You never know how the impression you make will affect the other person or anyone after that.

What do you think? Is this something you struggle with too?

Thanks for stopping by! If you get a moment, stop by the other names on the list! Let’s spread the word <3 Er

Here’s my obsession song of the moment ;o) 

Want to join us? Grab our button and spread a little kindness.

The Kindness Project

Sophia Chang                         Sara Larson
Erica Chapman
                      Matthew MacNish
Jessica Corra
                         Sara McClung
Elizabeth Davis
                      Gretchen McNeil
Christa Desir
                          Leigh Moore
Sarah Fine
                             Tracey Neithercott
Claire Hennessy
                    Katharine Owen
Elana Johnson
                       Elizabeth Poole
Liza Kane
                               Lola Sharp
Amie Kaufman
                       Michele Shaw
Alina Klein
                              Meagan Spooner
                                               Carolina Valdez Miller

19 Responses to “The Kindness Project”

  1. Oh yeah–I totally agree. And I definitely try not to let my own crap affect how I treat other people. It’s hard sometimes, but I think learning to do this is part of growing up, yanno? One of those transitions into adulthood.

  2. This is a biggie for me with my kids. I always remind myself that when something is bothering me, I can’t snap at them just because I’m feeling crappy. I can’t imagine doing the job you did. A true test of patience but what a learning experience!

  3. Man, it’s hard not to let our painful baggage affect how we behave. I think this is a really great message and a good reminder. Just as kindness can have a domino effect, so can negativity, no matter how valid it is. Love this, E.

  4. Elizabeth says:

    This is so true. I worked in a call center for years, and it really felt like I was getting paid to get treated like crap. It’s hard not to pay that forward sometimes, especially when you really want to be on the giving end of the crap stick instead of the receiving end.

  5. This is such a great point. It’s true, no one deserves to suffer because of our own personal crap. And Michele, your comment totally resonates with me. I have to remind myself not to let the stresses of my life lead me to snap at my kids. Or anyone else. And I love the song, too!

  6. Oh I just love this concept! The Kindness Project thing, so great! And that’s true–it’s good to keep perspective on our situations and who we’re dealing with. In high school a girl I knew committed suicide because she was overweight and got made fun of constantly, and it was so sad! And after that I just determined to be kind as often as I could (not that I was horrible, but you know what I mean), because it’s true, you never know what kind of day the other person is having and how your words/actions will affect them!!!

  7. Oh, Liz, YES! It was difficult!

    Thanks guys <3

  8. So true – we never know when that kind word or smile can be the saving of someone. I too answer a lot of calls at work and I find the nicer I am with each caller, the more I actually enjoy my job. I suppose we get back what we put out.

  9. Lola Sharp says:

    I don’t think I would have lasted 5 minutes at that job. I don’t take being yelled at well…I would hang up. O_0

    But I love love love the point you make about not taking our day or mood out on someone else.



  10. I love this! I just had a moment like this yesterday when I was waaaay too crabby to every living thing in my house because I was tired, smelled like spit-up and needed a break. But really, is it my teenage brother’s or my dog’s fault that I decided to have a baby and never ever sleep again? No.

    Thanks for the reminder 🙂

    PS. I love this idea!! I think I’m going to join this Kindness project thing!

  11. I cannot imagine a more difficult job. Sure, there are guys out there on oil derricks or what have you, but I imagine being the (anonymous) voice at the end of the line makes people feel they can say horrible things. I cringe just thinking about it. It’s great to hear the wisdom you learned from the job, because while we may not all do that job, we all call call centers at some point.

  12. I love this bc it’s something I tell my kids all the time: remember to be able to differentiate your problem from their problem. Lovely post.

  13. Sarah says:

    It’s my job not to let what’s going on with me affect the people I work with, but that doesn’t mean it’s always easy! Excellent post and an important point!

  14. Okay, that photos totally wins. Carol is so gangster.

  15. Great point. Though I do give you major credit for being able to do that. I’m pretty sure I’d fail at that endeavor since just thinking about working at a call center puts me on edge.

    Glad you’re part of the project! 🙂

  16. I know you too well, and you are always kind (even when I’m not – LOL)I love your ‘broken’ heart, it’s better than most healthy ones. You’re the best! <3

  17. Natalie says:

    I love this! I think when you become an adult it is necessary to compartmentalize your life a bit. It’s so easy to get frustrated with something and let it spill into everything you do.

    Great reminder.

    And I used to work at a call center too! It was horrible! 🙂

  18. So true. I have to admit that I struggle with this, but I’m trying to remember that the next person calling me won’t be the same person who upset me in the first place. And even if it is that person, I’m still the bigger one if I treat him/her with respect.


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