Remember when I said that this blog would include more than cooking and crafts? I love finding ways to do random acts of kindness for people and that is our discussion today. First let's begin by taking YOUR kindness temperature.
Think about life in the past few weeks or months. With gentleness, examine the opportunities you have had to do something for others. Did you jump right in or hesitate? Sometimes we pause because we aren't sure we want to get involved. Will we become sucked into a situation that we will regret at a later time? Sometimes we consider whether the person will welcome our involvement. What if we are rebuffed? How awful that feeling would be! What if I don't have a lot of extra money to donate to charity. The good news is many acts of kindness don't require any output of money!
There are several reasons we stop ourselves from reaching out. But what about the reasons to go ahead and take the leap?
Be honest with yourself, but gentle on the judgment. Lord knows we don't need any more negative voices berating us! If, in your moment of self-examination, you have discovered that you would like to increase the amount of kindness you extend to others, I have many suggestions.
I am involved with a grassroots organization called Heartworks (www.njheartworks.org) and much of what we do involves Acts of Kindness toward people in our community.
I had many of the fears I mentioned earlier about getting involved. The good news is this...those fears are a myth and only serve to stop us from doing good to people around us.
I have had SO many good, great and awesome experiences through Heartworks and none of the negative assumptions have some to fruition.
Okay, so you don't have a Heartworks group near you to help with giving to others. There are so many ways to open your heart to friends, family and even strangers. You may already do some of these things, but be raising your awareness, you'll recognize even more opportunities to add acts of kindness to each day.
1. Tell your children 5 reasons why you love them.
2. Write a note to the boss of someone who does a good job.
3. Give the good parking spot to someone else.
4. Make a meal for someone recovering from surgery.
5. Organize your neighbors to make Thanksgiving dinner for needy family.
6. Clean up litter in your section of the world.
7. Get a couple of teenagers to rake leaves, paint a fence or do other yard work for an elderly neighbor.
8. Send a card of thanks to Veterans living in your area.
9. When someone is going through dark times, send flowers, a balloon bouquet or a card.
10. Stop for a person waiting to cross the street.
11. Let a mother with young children in front of you at the grocery store.
12. Drop a floral arrangement at a senior center.
13. Shovel your neighbor's driveway.
14. Save Box Tops for Education and donate to your local school.
15. Send a card to a lonely person.
16. Donate blood.
17. Donate pet food to the Food Pantry.
18. Collect school supplies for a local shelter.
19. Do an act of kindness in the name of someone who has passed.
20. Walk a friend's dog when they are sick to give them a break.
I will revisit this subject and continue to provide inspiration and giving ideas. I am quite sure YOU have some fabulous ideas too. I would love to hear suggestions or ideas that you have tried. Leave a comment in the comments section.