The Kindness Clause

Author: G. Jefferies




A week ago, although it seems rather longer, Niki Lopez initiated a challenge. Not the sort I’d normally do because it’s one that drags you inside yourself to explore stuff that usually gets boxed up and ignored. Part of that default mind. The one that runs day to day business without too much thinking, well, apart from catastrophising that is. The usual mantra of despair, mistakes, the future. All neatly reinforced by TV news, media and politicos whose openers are ‘just to be absolutely clear’ when they are about to spend the next hour talking about nothing at all of substance and more than a lot about how great they are, cutting a good deal, vote for me or civilisation is doomed.

I will, at this juncture, just say the blogosphere has really caught me out. I have views and follows from over 50 countries. FIFTY countries people, and what does that tell me…we just want to get along fine. I see friendships forming, support for anything one cares to ask and kindness everywhere. This isn’t from the bloke down the road either. This is real people behind the blog. I’ve had chats with people in India, Spain, the Philippines, South Africa, Peru…I could go on and on. I’ve deliberately omitted UK (I live here) and the US (because it dominates hits…apart from Spain…on Facebook my author page collects people from Spain…why? I have no idea but that’s just brilliant don’t you think? Going global, to coin a phrase.

I’ve posted comments relating to my disdain of politicians in many a comment here and there so to those that have heard the above before I make no apologies but hope you read on.




I guess this is where this year started from. I prevaricate a lot. I learnt this on a mindfulness course, then a writing course. It may have been the other way round but the point is the default mind take over. Living zombie mode, automatic pilot, existing not living…no, that’s zombie mode again. Stuff happens in life that knocks the confidence now and then, throws a curve ball or proper stuffs you up. Everyone gets those here and there, some better, some worse; some affect you, some don’t. It’s life. Trick is to not collect bad things, not to dwell on them…the word here is catastrophise…sit in default mode recycling negativity until it paralysises the will to motivate.

I try to write books and stories. That was my personal hole. Good or bad? Am I messing about, people will think this is rubbish; hell I think it’s rubbish. I still do in unmindful moments but that, I’ve learnt, is the author mind and not unusual. I use the word learnt deliberately…it’s different from not knowing it happens and catastrophising to the point where you just stop.




So, in January I hit the blogosphere. Then met a few people, then a few more people and ended up where this post began. The kindness challenge, week one.




What am I grateful for?

Being here writing to you in a medium that is out of my comfort zone, going global and putting my writing up to be shot down in flames. Except it hasn’t and that’s down to all the wonderful bloggers that have taken time out of their lives to read, comment and make suggestions

Something I love about myself.

I’m here and enjoying writing, living in the moment and aiming to publish a book that is currently at my proofer.

Read an inspirational quote.

If you read any of my three day quote challenges then you will know I love quotes already 🙃

Wake up and think about 10 beautiful things in your life.

This is harder and comes after the chaos of school runs. That said, two of the ten sit in my car on the way…the other eight are for me to know. I’m not good at positive self appreciation yet, never mind going global with it 😊

Do something nice for yourself.

I do, over morning coffee, I come to check out my bloggers and whenever time allows comment and reply. Alas time is my enemy here and I can’t react to every blog I follow. If I try, and I have, it deals me a personal unkindness because I don’t achieve things I need to be doing. I have faith you all get this and have similar conflicts. But that’s OK, yes?

Dedicate some time to yourself.

This is new. Well, old but I forgot to keep to the plan. Two hours a day writing. It’s part of why I’m doing this challenge. To get into a habit for me.

Give yourself a break.

I’m working on this one. A break from catastrophising about things that can’t yet be changed, a future that hasn’t yet happened and a past that is not just filled with bad memories

Think of 5 good things for every negative thought.

Refer to the previous giving myself a break. This is where mindfulness comes in. Breaking the cycle. Meeting good people, engaging with them and remembering times that make me smile. They, I have realised, outweigh the negatives.

Come up with your own self-kindness exercise.

Not an exercise a clause. The Kindness Clause. I have developed this as a feel good factor for fellow bloggers and myself. It runs like this…

If you have the audacity to like a post, follow or comment written by me anywhere then I will visit your blog and repay the kindness with a comment and usually a follow.



I know not if this satisfies the challenge criteria. I was unmindful in leaving it until today to construct but in knowing that, I have been mindful to do it. I hope you all have a wonderful week and thank you for reading. I leave you with two more quotes;


“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.”

Winston Churchill


“Maybe Christmas, the Grinch thought, doesn’t come from a store.”

Dr. Seuss








  1. Hi, Gary! I’m sure you’ve read enough of my blog to know I’d LOVE this post. Giving yourself a bit of kindness, and offering it to others is the perfect act. First, because it feeds your should, and second because it feeds others. I believe we need both, to give to ourselves and to others, for meaning and magic to emerge.
    I, too, have been thinking about zombie mind a lot lately. Sometimes I worry that’s all we are. How to wake up the world? I don’t have the answer. But I see your post and I remember the fifty countries and the connection-seekers in all of them and I hope. I hope.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Gratitude in Kindness | Fiction is Food

    • Thank you again 😊 And quite right…we seem programmed to dwelling on failures and spoon fed negatives by the media…very cyclic…I’m trying to break out of that loop now and pick up good stories. I’m pleased you found it interesting and a useful post….there will be more I hope soon too 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Pingback: Finally Fiction’s Food Finished | purpleslobinrecovery

  4. You have a lovely blog here, Gary! I really enjoyed this post. I can relate to many of the problems you mentioned, and those quotes resonate (I’ll have to save some of those quotes for when I need a mental boost).
    It’s amazing what people you’ll meet in the blogosphere, like you said. I now have friends from all over the world, even the Philippines, which I’d never imagined before I started this blogging journey. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thank you for sharing the challenge as well as your insights and experiences. Connecting with like-minded people is so rewarding!

    It’s funny because my whole new endeavor (Goods Giving Back) incorporates the 10 things you list in some form or fashion. It was born out of my belief that the heart of a maker includes kindness which translates to the willingness to donate their goods (physical or virtual) to nonprofits in need.

    I am a firm believer that life is not a zero sum game and hope to build a community that demonstrates this tenet through the beautiful things they make and share.

    Kindness is key.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Love the post..I am still pondering on Nikki’s challenge and telling myself that I have just moved , the internet was only reconnected 2 days ago etc etc and then I read ” it doesn’t matter when you start but everyone will wait at the finish line for you ” so looks like I’ll just have to bite the bullet..mmmmmmm 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much for the kind comment 😊 Pondering, or prevaricating 😁 Although it sounds like you have very valid reasons. However, if you are at the pondering stage then one might assume a modicum of putting it off lol…. Go for it. I don’t think it matters when you start but more that you do, or at least think about it as if you were doing it even if you don’t have time to write a post. I’m sure there will be many more opportunities to engage if time is tricky right now…have to say, I’m finding this week really hard to create time to write too 😱

      Liked by 1 person

    • You are very welcome Andrea. I can use Dr if you like but I dispense with my title here…personal preference but if you prefer it I will use yours 🙃 I’m pretty new to mindfulness so pretty much making it up as I go along but so far it’s been a fascinating self exploration. Looking forward to learning what you have to say on the subject too and thank you for your kind comment about my writing 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Great post Gary! I could connect to most of it. As we already talked about going global with blogosphere! This should by now have become your comfort zone, don’t you think?
    I love the quote by Winston Churchill! I hope we are reminded of this during hard times/failure, but that’s hardly the case. Thank you for sharing and spreading kindness 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • It is part comfort zone…except when it isn’t….if you follow the patterns of catastrophising…must be a writing thing too…can I, can’t I… All very cyclic…but, being aware of that is also quite mindful and helps stop it becoming debilitating. This quotation thing is becoming a recurrent theme since the challenge too 🤔

      Thank you so much for your kind words and taking the time to read it 😊


  8. I like your words. My name is Gary as well. Also, I know know what prevaricate means. If I learned the word correctly, I am probably prevaricating all the time, though not necessarily intentionally. I’m just an evasive sort of Joe, naturally! Thank you for the follow👍🏻😄🚀

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Gary…although that sounds like self appreciation 🙃 You’re welcome for the follow and I’m honoured you took the time to pop over and read the words. Evasive by nature is one thing but the true context of prevaricating is avoiding doing something that needs doing by intentionally doing something else. It becomes deliberate evasion if you like….I think in mindfulness terms it’s a different beast altogether 🤔

      Liked by 1 person

  9. First of all I hope that you are feeling very pleased by having done this before Monday! I hope that it came easier than you thought going into it. I love the way you highlighted not recycling the negative. That’s a good way of putting it. Life happens but sometimes it’s how you react that makes the difference. How can you be more mindful and purposely give yourself a break? No need to answer, just something to ponder as we move from week 1 into week 2 without forgetting to practice the things that came to light. I’m so glad you decided to take part in the challenge and look forward to seeing how this can compliment your endeavor to be more mindful and live in the moment. Happy Sunday, enjoy you deserve it!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Did it this morning as per usual planning went off at a tangent when it got going…nothing new there 😁 Did it ping back to you? I wasn’t sure I had the right link. I must look out for this weeks prompts and get ahead of the game this time too! Thanks for popping over Niki…really appreciate it 🙃


  10. What a wonderful honest post Gary. Life’s certainly no picnic in the park but with Niki’s challenge at least it’s forcing us to realise that what we have is enough. And that if we change our thoughts we can make a mindful difference to our life and that of others. Cheers and have a great week ahead Gary. 🙂

    Liked by 5 people

    • Thank you so much Miriam. Can’t really be anything but honest in this one otherwise it just defeats the point 😁 Not easy mind and out of comfort zone springs to mind !! I’ve concluded its not life but thinking methods that are wrong. Change the latter and things might not be as bad as the default mind seems to insist they are….I posted two memoirs on here that started the past journey…turning it from bad memories into, hang about, there was some damn good ones buried in there too…what about them? It makes a difference. Thanks again and I hope your week goes well too. Will try and catch up on all the posts on this challenge shortly 😊

      Liked by 1 person

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