Spanista » Self Care Rituals, Reflections & Resources for Joyful Living by Ginny Shiverdecker

Regrets In Life? Failures of Kindness Shares Author George Sanders

Dear Wellness Seekers,

Regrets In Life? Failures of Kindness Shares Author George Sanders reminds us of the value of true kindness in our lives and the ripple effect it can have once we make it a focal point of our Self Care Practices.  I was casually watching CBS Sunday Morning while reading the New York Times this weekend when my attention was called to the story of George Saunders, the Author and Professor at Syracuse University whose convocation advice to the Class of 2013 went viral after The New York Times reprinted his speech later that summer. The theme is indeed compelling as it is not about seeking how to be successful in life, it is about a singular focus on how to walk through life. It appears is something he learned by living by trail and error but over time he found his way to embrace kindness as his personal brand of Self Care toward himself and others.

In his address, Saunders focused on the vital importance of being kind to others, noting: “What I regret most in my life are failures of kindness.” Though he admitted the goal of acting kindly seems “facile,” he emphasized that we must dedicate thought and effort to being kinder because “kindness, it turns out, is hard — it starts out all rainbows and puppy dogs, and expands to include… well, everything.”

The speech has also been published in book form under the title Congratulations, By The Way: Some Thoughts On Kindness (Random House Publisher.) You can find it on

You can also find the video on YouTube released in conjunction with the book’s publication. A poignant passage from Saunders’ speech is brought to life with stirring music and scribbled illustrations drifting through a starry sky. Try to watch it without tearing up; Spanista dares you to try.

Since then Saunders is featured in the Chipotle Author Series titled: ‘Cultivating Thought’ where he was asked to write a two minute essay on ‘The Future’ where is offers a different take on the same theme. (Chipotle Bag Illustration by Kristyna Baczynski)

Spanista Takeaway: Regrets In Life? Failures of Kindness Shares Author George Saunders suggests that through the eyes of a creative soul there is a need to live in a world where  gentleness is favored above meanness, compassion is favored over cruelty and encouragement is favored over criticism. Creative ideas are precious sparks that can be easily snuffed out with the whisper negativity. A writer really knows this. But the truth is and it is true for anyone who seeks to live life in ways that express their individuality. Like Saunders, Spanista believes embracing Kindness as a way to approach the world shifts your lens on the world. When you practice it daily the goodness and joy will spread out from our souls in reverberating rays through to touch the world around us.

This kind of heart felt joy brightens you entire life the better. A great Self Care Intention to ponder this Summer perhaps? Thoughts?

To Your Self Care Journey To Joy,


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