Is Being Kind More Important Than Being Right?

Why should you choose being kind over being right? Our Riser’s ambassador, Ramisha writes why kindness is important.

Let me start this article by quoting one of my favourite quotes from Dr Wayne W. Dyer, “If you have the choice between being right and being kind, choose to be kind.” 

With this, you can already tell what I’d choose if I had to choose between being kind or being right. This quote made me consider the influence of kindness on the lives of others. So, why is kindness important? A person may make someone's day by doing a small act of kindness like smiling at someone who looks sad and lonely to make their day better! The giver may feel a sense of pride and self-worth for spreading happiness, while the receiver may feel less lonely, knowing that someone cares about them and that they’ve a reason to smile and go about their day as there are people who’d make them feel special. 

But I’m not saying to discard being right. Sometimes people have to be right and in the process may alienate those around them. The important thing is to do the right thing. Yeah, no one loves being wrong and we all subconsciously want to feel we're better than others in some aspects, but I'm here to claim that being heard and treated with kindness is more important and far more satisfying than being correct.

So, why should you choose to be kind over being right? 


To me, we should correct someone kindly rather than correct them in a bad way.  

From the heartwarming Raya film by Taylors, ‘Sadaqah’, we can see how Kak Zaiton gave us the perfect example of being both right and kind. This short film left behind a very powerful message on both kindness and being right. 

Let’s take the spirit of Ramadan as another example. The Prophet S.A.W said, “Every act of kindness is charity,” (Sahih Bukhari: 6021). Displaying acts of kindness is a fundamental aspect of Ramadan and our religion. Islam encourages kindness and compassion towards everyone, no matter one’s religion, status, or colour. Everyone is equal and should be given equal kindness. Kindness entails care. It entails putting in an effort. It entails considering how we may provide someone with what they require without expecting anything in return. It means letting go of our preconceived notions and accepting individuals for who they are. 


A good word may brighten someone's day, soothe their misery, and even save their life. Perhaps that final assertion is a little extravagant, but the truth is that we never know how far our good deeds spread. We've all heard of someone in the depths of despair whose imminent act of self-destruction was halted by a seemingly insignificant act — a kind letter, a kind word, or a kind gesture from someone. The modest act of kindness shown to one person may inspire them to do something they’d not have done otherwise. Then, that individual could do something kind for someone else, and so on... The ripples go on and on. There’s no such thing as an insignificant kindness act. It just continues resonating outward, benefiting life in ways we may never realise.

It’s understandable that some of us do have a tendency to favour being smart over being kind and being right over... almost everything else as many of us were trained to always be right and get rewarded for being correct. However, sometimes being kind to others is the right thing to do.

As students, how can we be kind to others?  


There are a million small kind gestures, whether it’s big or small, that we’ll never know how positively they could impact people around us. If you find someone looking for directions, stop by and show them, guide them, or even offer to take them there. Give out compliments to people — trust me it will bring a big smile to their faces. 

I remember watching a movie and one of the scenes had the best example — an inspiring message on how we can create a ripple, a wave of helping others. The main character helps a poor driver who then thanks and asks how he can repay him back, to which he replies, “Today I’ve helped you, in return help 3 others and ask them to help 3 others”.

Without realising it, people started being kind and helping each other and when the main character falls into trouble, someone helps him, and says the exact same thing — the cycle was complete and it came back to him from a random stranger. How beautiful is that? A small gesture created a huge impact and a big wave of kindness, and kindness always comes back!  


As a Biomedical Science student, I can tell you that we can experience positive mental and physical changes when we practise kindness as it lowers our stress levels and increases our body's production of feel-good hormones like dopamine, oxytocin, and serotonin. According to American Psychological Association, engaging in kind acts increases positive affect. It was discovered that people who performed good deeds had substantial increases in positive affect (PA) that lasted for the whole four weeks of the trial.

So, the next time you're feeling stressed or anxious, you can think of ways to help others. This might be as simple as calling a friend to check on them, volunteering, or offering your time to advocate for a cause. Even a modest gesture may have a significant impact. 

I hope that this holy and peaceful month of Ramadan makes us embrace kindness more and helps us act upon it hereafter, no matter where or who we are with. 

Always remember, “There is a reward for kindness towards every living thing.” Prophet Muhammed S.A.W (Sahih Muslim: 2244).

Ramisha Adil is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Biomedical Sciences (Hons) at Taylor's University. She is also the current Vice President for SHINE Ambassadors, an active Risers’ ambassador, and part of the EXCO-BODs for multiple clubs/societies.

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