Kindness is really a gift that keeps on giving. It is amazing how a simple act of kindness can make any interaction more pleasant and more efficient. Everyone wants to feel appreciated, and recognizing someone's effort with kindness - even if the effort they are showing is part of their job - is always a good idea.
There are times, however, where kindness isn't the answer.
As a Black woman, often my anger is both assumed and vilified. Simple requests for action are deemed aggressive. I have many a personal story of having to couch questions in flowery language just to be heard. Women, in general, are socialized to believe that anger isn't an appropriate response, lest we be deemed hysterical or irrational or overly sensitive. Kindness becomes the assumed default, and when women (particularly Black women) are not kind, we are ignored or belittled or gaslighted.
Kindness is a courtesy - not a prerequisite for recognizing someone's humanity.
Lead with kindness: be open to giving people as much positivity as you can. More often than not, a kind word will get you what you need. Just recognize when someone is mistaking your kindness for weakness. What you need has value, regardless of how you ask for it.
Be kind until you can't, then do what you have to do.
24 days of kindness (or not) left.