There’s a battle going on around us these days. Conflict. Differences of opinion have turned people against each other. Human beings are attacking one another with harsh words enveloped by arrogant and superior attitudes.

It’s exhausting to witness.

The thing is, there is enough that is hard about life without allowing these kinds of things to drain us.

My job is one that requires a lot of fortitude. Physically, mentally, and emotionally. Lord knows I love a challenge, but the challenge lately – in work, and in life – is not to lose my softness.

When people hurt us or let us down, it hardens our spirits. When we fight the same inner demons, day after day, we learn to harden our emotions. When we see the worst of humanity displayed in front of us, day after day, it hardens our hearts.

There’s a song that says, “Sometimes I feel as cold as steel and broken like I’m never gonna heal.”

I’m afraid our society is becoming exactly that. Cold. Indifferent. And I wonder sometimes, what it will take to change that.

I’m as hardened as anyone. I don’t let many people close to me and the older I get, I find myself withdrawing into myself, more and more. Because it’s just easier than showing softness to….anyone.

But I so often forget that softness can also be strength. It can be just what is needed. People won’t immediately respond to it sometimes, but I’m finding that, more and more, softness is almost always the right answer.

When I’m tender towards my fellow man, when I take off the armor that years of hurt, disappointment, broken trust, and pain have made, and just extend some kindness – something changes. The atmosphere feels different….lighter…hopeful.

If you’re feeling, as I have been, completely and utterly exasperated with life, with the general public, the media, the election, maybe your job or family or even your friends – try a little softness. 

You see, the way this world is going, it’s our only shot at making a difference anymore. Arguing will get you nowhere. Boycotting will not solve problems. Sharing articles and facts and in-your-face items on social media will not bring people together for a common good.

Only kindness will do that. Only taking off that armor and allowing yourself to be vulnerable will show people that it’s ok – nobody had everything all figured out. 

It’s good to be strong. But sometimes, strong is soft.