Kindness is treated as our weakness.
Human nature being what it is, it is my guess that most of us at one time or another have made the honest mistake of equating kindness with weakness. In the kind person we may see someone who can be manipulated or swayed by excuses, someone who will fall for 'any ole line.' And, I believe, most of us have experienced the fallacy of that thinking.
Kindness is not borne of timidness, lack of principles, or bashfulness. Kindness comes instead from inner strength, compassion, and a strong sense of self.
Anyone can be a straight shooter, ie, say whatever comes to mind without thought to how the message will be received or its consequences. Such a delivery requires no insight or forethought about the reception of the message, and is essentially selfish.
Straight shooters are "me" people, while those who act and speak through kindness are "we" people. A dangerous generality, but one I will dare to make, is that life experience is what helps to cause the metamorphosis from selfish thinking to thinking which includes others.
Think back to our youth; life seemed to be filled with such black and white issues. A thing or person was either wrong or right. We had precious few details that clouded our thinking. But as life moved forward, and we began to experience other people and situations, the color grey became more and more prevalent in our thinking. And other colors began to fill our thinking, until a virtual rainbow of experiences, ideas, and thoughts were ours for the taking.
It is from the cornucopia of experiences that we formulate our principles and our boundaries. We learn from others that assertive messages garner more positive results, in the long run, than aggressive messages. We experience for ourselves what it is like to be on the receiving end of straight shooter conversations. We revel in the kindnesses which, though often unearned, come our way. From all these messages we develop into the kind of messengers we...