"As you celebrate kindness as your new superpower, know that it will become ever stronger and more transformative as you continue to use it!"

In 2015, Cameron committed to a year of living kindly. To harness accountability, she blogged about her experiences and ended the year with valuable lessons that have changed her mindset and her habits. This book recounts what she learned and how she achieved being kind in her daily life, something that has become a way of life for her now as opposed to just an experiment in kindness.

Through personal anecdotes, curated wisdom, and multidisciplinary insights, Cameron persuades readers to extend kindness outward in their personal and professional lives. With exceedingly helpful “Kindness in Action” tips at the end of each chapter, Cameron’s content can easily be adapted to fit the real lives of everyday people seeking to live kindly. Thoughtfully organized for readers, Cameron suggests options for approaching the book: read the short sections as weekly meditations, dip into chapters that resonate, or devour the book whole for a full immersion into kindness.

Important chapters remind readers that living kindly requires practice, and the ability to respond in our daily lives with kindness will strengthen over time with more reflection and repetition. The topics covered in each chapter are wide-ranging and offer a thorough examination of the many facets of kindness. Cameron is especially adept at revealing how kindness intersects with so many other qualities like courage, gratitude, patience, curiosity, and vulnerability. In these places of overlap, Cameron is inspired by other self-help experts like Brene Brown and effectively incorporates their research into her own.

The author’s own life experiences and professional expertise offer plenty of authentic takeaways that will keep readers motivated to locate pathways to kindness and to walk those pathways with mindfulness and intention. Cameron’s belief in the transformative power of kindness is contagious as she encourages with small steps, offers probing questions for reflection and mindfulness, and provides actionable steps and achievable tasks. While teaching kindness is certainly universal and timeless, the need to foster this trait in ourselves today feels pressing and urgent, for we seem to be bereft in unfeeling spaces rife with bullying, everyday cruelties, and injustice. The writer’s challenge to live kindly feels like a prescient directive for our modern times, even though the message is borrowed straight from the ancient poets, philosophers, spiritualists, and teachers.

For some, the concept of living kindly may seem quaint or like a lost art in this era of division and disconnect, but the demand is evident in popular kindness initiatives like Random Acts of Kindness and social and emotional learning initiatives in schools with a thematic emphasis on developing kindness in kids. Also, the success of Netflix’s recent documentary on Fred Rogers, Won’t You Be My Neighbor, affirms the continued interest in living a life of simple kindness. Perhaps kindness is trending, though one hopes, of course, that it never goes out of style.

Cameron’s book contributes mightily to the task of keeping kindness relevant and necessary in our lives. She offers countless practical ideas for how to live kindly in our neighborhoods, office spaces, and homes. She is perfectly in step with the needs of our society to create a kinder world, and she is backed up by science, which confirms the benefits of living kindly on our physical and mental health. Cameron could easily sit beside Oprah on a session of Super Soul Sunday with this instructive message for achieving kindness. But her kindness manifesto wrought from personal experience and the deep work of reflection can stand on its own as a worthy guide about the benefits of spending not just a year but a lifetime of living kindly.

RECOMMENDED by the US Review

Return to USR Home