At ILNI we are big fans of kindness; kindness to others, kindness to the planet and kindness to ourselves. The best thing about kindness is how contagious it is, how a single random act of kindness to one person can prompt them to go on and make someone else’s day special too. With the aim of encouraging widespread outbreaks of kindness here are 15 ideas to get you infected with the kindness bug and spread it around.
- Tell someone you love, that you love them. Put your feelings into words and tell them to their smiling face. We can never say the words ‘I love you’ too many times.
- Give a compliment to someone during your day. Compliment your barista on making a great coffee, compliment your hairdresser for their great service, whenever you have a chance to compliment someone on a great job, do it!
- Send someone a cheerful card to brighten his or her day. We all know how cool it is to get something in the post that is not a bill to pay. Write a couple of short lines and let them know you are thinking of them and hope they are having a great day.
- Give someone a hug. Grab one of your kids, your partner, your parents, your dog, or whomever you like to hug and hug them tight today.
- Take a cooked meal or a simple vegetable soup around to a friend who is sick. The tradition of taking food to the homes of those who are sick might seem a little old-fashioned in our modern times, but we can guarantee it will make the recipient and their family feel very loved in a difficult time.
- Call an elderly relative to say hi and to let them chat away happily for as long as they like. Sometimes we can forget how lonely life must get when you are on your own. Everyone likes to have someone to chat with, be that someone.
- Write a letter to someone you admire. Tell them how they have inspired you and thank them. Bonus points if you post the letter rather than an email it. Putting something on paper makes it all the more special to receive.
- Offer to drive an elderly neighbour to do their shopping. Help them carry their groceries inside and put them away too.
- Give up your seat on a train or bus. Look out for someone who looks like they need the seat more than you. Perhaps you could offer it to someone carrying a heavy shopping bag or a tired and hot tourist.
- Allow someone with fewer grocery items to cut in front of you in the line at the checkout.
- Spend a few minutes in your neighbourhood picking up rubbish from the sidewalk. Showing you care about your street may inspire others to do the same.
- Smile at everyone. A smile costs nothing and is often rewarded with a great smile in return. Don’t be upset if some people don’t smile back, they may be lost in their own thoughts, smile anyway.
- Make a really cool care-package for a new mother, a recently widowed neighbour or a student living away from home. Fill a box with essentials for their pantry plus a treat or two. Leave it by their back door for them to find and be surprised.
- Make a donation to the local food bank. Next time you are shopping, consider getting some good quality pantry essentials and drop them at the food bank to help out someone in need. You may never know who you helped, but you can be sure the food will be a kindness to someone in need.
- Show someone you value them with a lovely bunch of flowers. It could be your mother, your aunt, the receptionist at your office or the teacher of your child. Even the smallest bouquet of flowers is guaranteed to bring a smile to the recipient and make them feel appreciated.
We hope you will be encouraged to do one or more of the above acts of kindness today and daily find more ways to spread around a little kindness. After all, this is how we change our world for the better, one random act of kindness at a time!