Monday, January 4, 2010

Random Acts of Kindness

Have you ever noticed that kindness is contagious?

A school in Seattle teaches a class on kindness. The teacher gives the class assignments: be kind to yourself, a family member, a friend, a stranger. The students often ended up integrating their new-found kind behavior into their daily life. 

Those students teach us a beautiful lesson: that it's possible to train ourselves to be more thoughtful. Although Random Acts of Kindness are simple to do; we have to plan for them until they become a natural part of our life. Below are some simple ideas to get you started:

For Adults:

Smile and say "hi" to a stranger
Open the door for someone
Befriend a new co-worker
Let your staff leave early
Let someone move ahead of you in the grocery check our line
Tell someone a true compliment
Pick up trash while on a walk
Visit a sick friend

For Children: 

Befriend a new kid in school
Write a teacher a note of appreciation
Bring a treat to share with the class
Allow a new friend to join your group
Be kind to the kid that is picked on
Help a friend with their homework


Donate old but nice clothes to a shelter
Donate blankets to the homeless and/or animal shelter

With a little money:

 Buy a lottery ticket and give it to someone on the street
Pass out helium balloons to people on the street
Leave enough change in the vending machine for the next person
Deliver baked cookies to the local fire station
Give someone who is struggling a grocery store gift card
Top off someones parking meter
Pay the toll of the car behind you
Give a homeless person a gift card for a meal

This New Year, let's reach out as often as possible and create a ripple effect of charity, hope and kindness. Let's turn 2010 into a year to be remembered not because of its troubles, but because of its solutions. Together, with just a single act of kindness each day, we can make this world a better place.

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