Are you on board for making this world a happier place to live in 2018? If so, you may want to try this simple, but important idea.
February is the month of love, and random acts of kindness are one of the most powerful tools we have to create a more loving lifestyle. After all, these acts often demonstrate selfless and unprompted love toward absolutely anyone. It’s easy enough to show your partner you adore them by giving them a kiss as they leave for work; you’re in a committed relationship and you’re emotionally invested in their wellbeing. When you show kindness in a random, spontaneous way, you’re saying that any person is worthy of that kind of attention and care – regardless of where they come from or what their daily life may look like, and regardless of whether or not you’ll receive anything in return.
Random acts of kindness may sound like a fluffy theoretical idea lacking any real substance or impact, but it’s exactly what our world needs right now. If we all took concrete steps toward showing the people we encounter on a day-to-day basis that their happiness is important to us, even as a total stranger, perhaps we’d all feel a little lighter on our feet.
These acts don’t have to look dramatic or worthy of a sentimental viral video. If you have the means to make a grand gesture of generosity then by all means, do it, but even those with very little can take this step. They can be small, simple gestures that simply lift another person’s spirit, even if only for a moment.
These acts also don’t have to go toward a stranger, although those moments can be the most powerful. We should aspire to show kindness to everyone in our lives, not only through our words but also in practical, useful ways that make their day better on some level.
Wherever you are today in your journey toward a more loving way of living, these ideas could help you get started:
Offer a compliment
Everyone deserves compliments, but perhaps choose someone who you don’t often speak to. Catch a co-worker by surprise when you’re silently fixing your hair side-by-side in the bathroom. Find something you admire about the people you encounter, and make a point to express it aloud.
Give your leftovers to those in need
When you’re cooking up a delicious dinner for your family and find that you have several platefuls left over at the end, consider packing them up and giving them to the homeless people you walk past on the way to work.
Connect with the elderly
Elderly people can struggle immensely with loneliness and isolation. Take the time to visit your local nursing home and get to know some of the people there. You’ll have the chance to offer much-needed company and a listening ear to someone you otherwise wouldn’t have had the chance to meet.
Send surprise letters
Write letters to loved ones about your appreciation to them and post it for an uplifting surprise.
Be the voice of positivity
If you hear co-workers gossiping about somebody, be the person who shares a positive thought about that person in their defence.
Pay for a meal
When you visit a restaurant, pay the bill for a family or a lonely stranger before you leave.
Whatever you do, do it with a selfless spirit and don’t expect anything in return. That’s the attitude that’s at the root of the random acts of kindness movement, and that’s the attitude that could transform the way we live.
Text by Hannah Gascoyne