February 26th is Pink Shirt Day, a day to raise awareness about bullying. This day is a chance for us to have conversations about how we can prevent bullying in our schools and in our communities. And maybe I'm naive, but I think that it's really simple. If we don't want our children to be bullied, we need to create a culture of kindness. A culture where it is cool to be nice to other people. Where we stop and think before we open our mouths, and ask these basic questions: Is it Kind, Is it True, Is it Necessary?
Gossip is easy and we all fall into its trap occasionally. We do it because looking down on someone else makes us feel better about ourselves. Because then we don't have to look at all the ways we feel like we are not good enough. And there is a never-ending list of the things we judge ourselves for every day. So there is a never-ending list of the things we judge others for.
But if we really want to stop bullying, we need to start looking at the words that come out of our mouths. And beyond that, the things we say inside our heads, the unkind words we say to ourselves every day. Just for today, stop and notice how often you judge or criticize yourself or others. And then pat yourself on the back for doing your part to stop bullying.
Love, kindness and gratitude,