I have recently been thinking about how we can all participate in a random act of kindness. Posting a daily photograph and trying to think out of the box to meet the challenge has been great fun. It was also the perfect way for me to look to increase my Instagram engagement.
You can read more about how I got started on Instagram here.
All was going well until I reached Day 27
Now it’s not that I have some form of triskaidekaphobia towards number 27. It’s my birth date so I actually quite like 27.
So what was the problem
The problem was Day 27 of the challenge called for ‘A random act of kindness’. This single instruction really got me questioning myself. Am I kind? Do I do kind things? What represents kindness? Why did the thought of being kind sound so alien to me? More importantly, what if I am actually a bad person?
I did what everyone does in an emergency. I immediately turned to Google for help and I read through a list of 100 random acts of kindness. You will be pleased to know I was able to tick off quite a few acts of kindness on the list.
- I regularly talk to strangers
- Buy coffees for colleagues
- Donate to charities
- Volunteer in the community
- Let people go ahead of me in a queue
- Hold doors open
- Compliment strangers
- Smile at strangers
- Say good morning to strangers
- Pass on my prepaid parking ticket
- When I am out dog walking I have even been known to accompany an elderly person for a while if they have stopped to talk to me rather than rush to overtake them
Feeling somewhat relieved. I had successfully passed the test of being a pretty decent human being. It then got me wondering if there was anything else I could possibly be doing.
Giving is better than receiving
I am fortunate that I work for an organisation that takes its corporate social responsibility seriously. Employees are given two days each year to volunteer in the community. This can be almost any type of volunteering from litter picks to church activities to working with young people creating graffiti art.
Most people don’t take the opportunity to volunteer. To be quite honest I think they are the ones really missing out. Not necessarily for the added value that they can give the community, but for the added value a random act of kindness can actually give them in return.
I know the feelings of reward I have had when volunteering for entrepreneurship events at the local schools. I have benefitted more personally through being able to give just that little back.
What did I actually do for my day 27 random act of kindness
Well on the 27th I made even more of a conscious effort. I smiled and said good morning to every stranger I passed. I bought coffees for my colleagues and bought raffle tickets for a charity event. I even took someone else’s dog poo bag off the beach with me when I was leaving! I also dropped a few cans of food in at the food bank collection point in my local Sainsbury’s. My final act of kindness for the day was a letter I left for someone else to find.
When you are going about your busy life just remember how it felt when someone was kind to you and pay it forward a little bit. I guarantee it will be well worth it. It doesn’t have to be a big gesture or even have a cost attached to make a difference to someone’s day.
27 Day Random Act of Kindness Challenge
Thinking about doing kind acts made me feel really positive about myself. So much so that I created my own Random Act of Kindness 27 Day Challenge.
As it’s World Kindness Day why not give the challenge a go and leave me a comment to let me know how it went for you.
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