Kinder and Gentler

Remember that quote by author, Wendy Mass? “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a battle that you know nothing about.” Well that’s true. We may not know if someone is facing a surgery, has suffered a breakup, is terrified to get sick, or has lost a loved one. When someone speeds by us on the highway, we don’t know whether he is a jerk who thinks the rules of the road don’t apply to him or a father who’s racing to the hospital because his child has been injured. Those are the battles we know nothing about and need to stop thinking we do and judging everyone.

COVID has changed everything. Wendy’s words are still true but now, we are all also fighting a battle that everyone knows something about. No one is untouched. Those of us in the healthcare fields are helping others fight the battle that we are also fighting, ourselves. It’s crazy-making.

To me, the most important words in the quote are, “Be kind.” Period. Just be kind, please. Everyone needs it. We need to be gentle with ourselves and Hashem knows that this world could use a little kindness toward others. Okay a lot.

This week a new client of mine, a strong, capable, wonderful woman needed some help with the online intake form. Of course I was patient and understanding that technology doesn’t come easily to her. It doesn’t for me either. But it wasn’t until she thanked me with an outpouring from her heart for my compassion that I realized just how unkind people have been to one another, in too many instances of late. Kindness needs to become part of the new normal and not seen as an unexpected gift.

Please, do your part to mindfully be kinder and gentler to yourself and others. I’ll continue my work on that as well and, together, we’ll chip away at the task of achieving tikkun olam, repair of the world.

About the Author
Dr Terry Segal has a Ph.D. in Energy Medicine, and M.A. in Educational Psychology and Theater. She’s a Psychotherapist, Board Certified Hypnotherapist, public speaker, and author of the self-help book, "The Enchanted Journey: Finding the Key That Unlocks You" and women’s fiction novel, "Hidden Corners of My Heart." She writes the New Moon Meditations column for the Atlanta Jewish Times and is a mixed media artist.