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By Lisa Cypers Kamen.

FlowerWhether 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.®

Happiness Strategy:

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.

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Lisa Cypers Kamen is a filmmaker, positive psychology coach, author, host of Harvesting Happiness Talk Radio, professor and lecturer specializing in the field of sustainable happiness. She is widely recognized as an expert on the subject. Lisa’s acclaimed documentary film co-produced with her now fifteen year-old daughter, Kayla, “H-Factor…Where is your heart?” explores how people in varied circumstances find, generate and share happiness. In addition to her film on happiness, Lisa has also published a number of articles and books entitled, Got Happiness Now?, Are We Happy Yet?, Leadership: Helping Others to Succeed and Reintegration Strategies, about combat trauma and using positive psychology principles to create wellness in a post-war new normal. Lisa’s written work is featured on blogs for the Huffington Post, and and she is a TEDx community event speaker. In addition, she is the Happiness Expert for the Florida Department of Citrus/ Florida Orange Juice in its Take on the Day campaign.

Harvesting Happiness for Heroes™ is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation that delivers stigma-free integrated combat trauma recovery services to warriors and their loved ones. Modalities include scientifically proven strengths based Positive Psychology coaching and interdisciplinary tools such as film, yoga, meditation, art and creative writing designed to mindfully empower the client to achieve increased self-mastery, self-esteem and reclaim her/his life. HH4Heroes focuses on the balance of mind, body and emotion resulting in greater overall wellbeing and the transformation of Post-Traumatic Stress (PTS) into Post-Traumatic Growth (PTG). HH4Heroes offers retreat workshops, one-on-one coaching, Battle Buddy programs, as well as our new R.E.B.O.O.T Online virtual community coaching classrooms designed to reach underserved areas. In addition, HH4Heroes deploys Return to Duty™ civilian and corporate training to help welcome a warrior home and into the community and workplace.

Lisa is committed to teaching Happiness is an inside job™ and helping others end their needless suffering through intentionally cultivating greater joy.

For more information, please visit, and

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