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“Kindness in words creates confidence. Kindness in thinking creates profoundness. Kindness in giving creates love.” – Lao Tzu
On November 5, 2013 I turn 29-years-old. In celebration, I am doing one random acts of kindness each day for the 29 days leading up to my Birthday. (October 8th- November 5th)
When I tell friends and family what I am doing the response is usually two-fold. First they say something along the lines of, “that’s nice,” which is quickly followed by, “but why?”
So why am I doing this?
1) Because being kind to people makes them happy, and I want to make people happy. Did you know happy people are more likely to be kind to those around them? Kindness is contagious! If I can be the first domino in a chain reaction of kindness that would be awesome.
2) The world is full of negativity. Have you watched television, looked at a newspaper, or eavesdropped on a stranger’s conversation in the past 24 hours? I certainly haven’t done that last one. Chances are you were privy to a new bit of negative information. The government is crumbling, people are out of work, sex-trafficking is at an all-time high, and Kanye and Kim are having marital troubles. I know, that last one is a shocker! I may not be able to do much to snuff out the negativity but I can add positivity to help create more of a balance between the good and the bad.
3. I have a one-year-old son who is just starting to learn about cause and effect. He drops a ball, it bounces. He squeaks a toy, the dog comes running. He screams and cries, I run into the kitchen and get him a cookie, his binky, some juice, a toy, a blanket…. Oh my gosh please stop crying. (Okay I don’t actually do that…ever….never….not once…) Every baby book I’ve read talks about the importance of modeling appropriate behavior for your child around this age. What better lesson to model for him than kindness. I’d like him to get him involved now so that being a kind person becomes part of the fabric of his character. I want him to see kindness as the norm and not the exception.
4. This is the part where I tell you that this pursuit is purely selfish in nature. Because it is, truly. Making people happy, sending out positive vibes into the world, and being a good role model for my son makes me happy. It gives my life meaning. It makes me feel fulfilled in a way buying something for myself or solely focusing on my own needs never could. It gives me something to look forward to for the next 29 days.
That’s the thing about kindness. The giver is always at the receiving end.
So why make this public?
Believe it or not, I was not the first person to come with this idea. You’re shocked, right? I thought it was an ingenious, unique idea when I first thought of it, and then I did a Google search. 601,000 Google results later I learned that many people had the exact same “ingenious and unique” idea.
This turned out to be a blessing though, because it gave me a lot of great ideas to go off of. The dozens of blogs I poured through provided inspiration. More importantly, they gave me hope that there are other people out there doing random acts of kindness. The balance is already shifting.
If you’re reading this now, my hope is that this blog can serve as some inspiration for you too. A kind act done by one individual is just that, a single kind act. But millions of kind acts carried out by millions of people, that is world-altering.
“Three things in human life are important. The first is to be kind. The second is to be kind. The third is to be kind.” – Henry James