By Lisa Cypers Kamen.
Whether we like to admit it or not, we all engage in a bit of everyday politics. That’s especially the case when we meet someone for the first time, regardless of whether the person is a potential love interest, new client or friend. Just as any good diplomat would, we enter these first meetings with an arsenal of tools to help us represent ourselves in the best possible light.
For some people, the tactics are a big smile and lots of jokes; for others, it’s a calm, collected manner that they’re hoping will come off as sophisticated. For an extremely few number of us, our diplomacy tool may be simply being ourselves – but that number is far too few. What’s your personal foreign policy?
Although each person enters situations with a different set of relationship-building tools, there’s no better method than kindness to get a bond off on solid footing. Your effort to be comical and extremely talkative could come off as overconfident in the company of a quiet, reserved person, but the major components of kindness are always in good taste.
Kindness is a word used often, but what does being kind actually look like? It’s compassion toward other viewpoints, a genuine feeling of goodwill toward others, and a pleasant disposition that makes the people around you feel at ease. There’s no better building block for a meaningful relationship than simple, genuine kindness. By being an Ambassador of Goodwill, you’ll find yourself earning the trust, admiration and kindness of others – and for good reason!
Just like with anything else in life, the quality of your relationships reflects the quality you put into them. When you try to impress from day one, your relationships are bound to be artificial and lacking depth. But, conversely, when you free yourself of facades and other diplomatic tactics, your relationships will reflect your genuineness and will be honest from the get-go.
So from this point on, ditch the act and focus solely on being an Ambassador of Goodwill. With kindness at your side, you’ll develop the deep, meaningful relationships you’ve been craving. And as an added bonus, the kindness you make a habit of showing is bound to trickle back into your own life in unexpected ways.
Happiness is an inside job.®
For the next 3 minutes, list on paper as many potential acts of kindness as you can think of. After the 3 minutes is over, read through your list. Which, if any, of these things have you done in the past few days? The past week? If the number is lower than you would like it to be, make a list of strategies for working more kind gestures into your daily life. Make a conscious effort to live each day with kindness as a top priority.