4th February, 2014
So this week has all been about being kind. Some days this means being a little kinder to myself. But most days, hours, minutes, it means stepping up and being kinder to someone else.
Because when you are kind, you reconnect with your humanity and somehow kindness always seems to bounce back on itself. You start out thinking that being kind is going to cost you somehow – that you will need to ‘work at it’ and it will mean a huge investment of your time and energy. This is where we are sadly insane!
My experience is this: Kindness is a pretty down to earth and simple thing. When you practice kindness it doesn’t take up much energy at all, and really not much time. About the most ‘exhausting’ thing I have done is volunteer, and believe me I got more from that exchange than what I contributed!
And even after all of that ‘effort’ and ‘hard work’ I was buzzed for such a longtime that you may be mistaken for thinking I had overdosed on raspberry lemonade!
The truth is that being kind to others, no matter how small the kindness is, makes you feel like the best human being on the planet. It’s as if we remember who we are meant to be; how we are meant to walk this earth, and how we are meant to live our lives.
There is also growing amount of evidence that being kinder, and practicing even small acts of kindness, is also good for our mental and physical health. See what I mean? We somehow end up on the better end of this deal all the time.
So today I thought I would share a few majestic ways to be a little kinder, and in return, I hope that this transforms your life.
- Go out of your way to make someone a fresh cup of tea or coffee.
- Put that gold coin rattling around in your bag in the homeless guy’s cup.
- Go a little wild and buy him a takeaway coffee or cold drink…and put a few gold coins in his cup!
- Leave flowers or a potted plant for a friend who needs a little cheering up.
- Give away the old car you are going to only get $250 for at the dealership.
- Locate your local soup van and donate a night of your time.
- Send a greeting card with a nice message to someone who you would normally not be kind to.
- Help the mother with the screaming child in the supermarket, rather than mutter under your breath about naughty children.
- Leave fresh water outside for birds or passing puppies.
- Save your gold coins in a cheap tin money box and donate the tin to your local homeless shelter.
- Moving house? Perhaps you can donate some furniture to a homeless shelter or a charity? Youth homeless services are always looking for furniture in good condition.
- Pay the parking meter for someone else!
- Give someone a second chance, or perhaps a third.
- Say thank you to your partner. Often. tell them how amazing they are. Often!
- Buy an extra bunch of flowers when you visit someone in hospital and ask the nurses to give them to someone.
- Buy the nurses a bunch of flowers, or a box of chocolates.
- Give a friend or your partner a foot massage, or a full massage.
- Make someone who needs a bit of support some dinner.
- Take a sick friend soup or a picnic in bed, with a good book and a funny card.
- Encourage your children to look after their toys and clothes so they can donate them to a charity when they have grown out of them.
- Spend time with your children and praise them for kind behaviour.
- If you know someone is going through a difficult time, help out a little by purchasing a gift card, or sending a little money in the mail. They don’t even need to know who you are!
- Clean your sister/brother/cousin’s room for them.
- Wash the family dishes!
- Cook your parents a meal.
- Make fresh jam and give it out to all of your colleagues at work.
- Leave a post it note with a kind message on someone’s computer screen.
- Think before you speak! Say kind and genuine things to the people you see/work or live with all day!
- Wash your friends car.
- Plant a herb garden and then share the herbs when they grow.
- Be kind and courteous when you drive; leave the poison of road rage behind.
- Think about the words you use all day. Make an effort to speak positively, instead of negatively.
- Get excited for other peoples dreams. Listen to them and believe in them.
- Be present for your family, friends and colleagues. Show them that you are interested by focussing on them, looking them in the eyes and listening.
- Open doors for people.
- Give up your seat on a bus/tram/train or at an event.
- Tell the person you love that you love them, as many times as you can. There is never too many times!
- Go out of your way for someone just once. Maybe this is about organising a surprise dinner or event, or driving someone home, that is not on your way home.
- Offer to babysit a friends children so they can have a night out together.
- Surprise your love with small random gifts or cards with a poem. Pop something in their lunch, or set up a picnic dinner in the back yard or on the balcony under the stars.
- Call your mother/grandmother/father/grandfather , or person that raised you, at least every week.
- Approach every phone call with a smile. The person at the other end will hear the smile in your voice.
- Stand up for people who are being bullied or wrongfully treated, even if you are a little scared yourself.
- Get to know your neighbours f you can. Even if you just watch out for the old lady across the road, or mow the neighbours lawn when you mow your own.
- Take a moment to thank someone who has made a difference in your life or has helped you. You can do this in so many ways from sending a text message to sending a card. Or have a conversation with them and thank them face to face. Don’t let them brush you off! Make sure that they hear you.
- Smile at strangers. I do this all the time and I am amazed at how many people smile back.
- Try and turn someones day around. Got a grumpy staff member at the check out, or a waiter/waitress in a bad mood? See if you can make them smile. Often it just takes a kind word, or an understanding comment that acknowledges their work to make them feel a bit better.
- Pay for the person next in line behind you. Perhaps this is a coffee, or their sandwich, or the road /bridge toll, their petrol, or a cold drink, or perhaps even a whole meal like a family dinner!
- Be a mentor for someone. This may be a child, or a colleague. Be their hero for a day or a year. Go the extra mile to assist them with changing their world and achieve their dreams.
- Be the kindest person you can be – it will change your life!
There are so many ways to let a little kindness into your life, I really could have listed hundreds of different ideas to try. But I encourage you to check out the following kindness movements: randomactsofkindness.org and kindness.com.au
Or you could just google kindness and find the relevant kindness sites in your part of the world. I’ll leave you tonight with a beautiful quote: