We live in a time when we keep more to ourselves, overwhelmed by our own obligations. With our eyes turned downward and attention consumed by devices, we miss opportunities to connect with and support those around us.
More than ever, it feels like we need reminders that there are still good people in the world. This is why it’s important that we all pitch in and do our part. If we engage in one act of kindness every single day, we can leave, at least, one person a little happier than they were before our paths crossed. Shouldn’t that be a goal for which we all strive?
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You don’t have to pay off someone’s mortgage or leave your server a £2000 tip to make a difference, of course. Performing small, but meaningful, acts that could boost someone else’s day. Here are some ideas.
We all perform many menial tasks throughout the day without much recognition. Maybe your spouse checks the locks before bed every night or your favorite cashier always makes the checkout process a little brighter. Whatever it is, there’s someone in your life that consistently does something to take care of you in some way. Let them know that you notice and appreciate their efforts. It will mean a lot to them.
Life can be busy and we don’t always pay attention as closely as we should. You never know what’s happening in someone’s life so take a few moments to reach out to a friend you haven’t spoken to in a while and ask them how they’re doing — and then really listen.
It really does feel like there aren’t enough hours in a day to get everything done, so imagine how valuable it would be if someone was willing to lend you a hand. If you notice someone talking about their hectic weekend or that they are feeling overwhelmed, offer to run some errands or watch their child for them. Sharing the load makes the burden easier to bear.
The next time you’re at the drive-thru for a coffee shop or fast food restaurant, ask how much the order is behind you. If it’s within your budget, cover the tab so that when that customer tries to pay at the window, their bill has already been paid. They’ll probably be grateful and may even pay it forward!
If you come across coupons that you’re not going to use, take them with you to the store and then leave them near the associated items. When someone goes to pick up that jar of canned tomatoes, for example, they’ll be saving money because you were thoughtful enough to share the discount.
There are thousands of kids across America fighting for their lives or recovering from major illnesses. It’s hard for them to be in the hospital away from their homes, family and friends but a small gesture could brighten up their day. Consider crafting a homemade card and send it to an organization that will distribute it to a child in need of encouragement.
Have you ever worked with someone who was absolutely phenomenal? Do you know someone who is looking for a job? Consider writing them a glowing (but factual) letter of recommendation that they can submit along with their application. Another option is to endorse them on LinkedIn! It only takes a few minutes but it can really be valuable to someone who is out of work.
At the end of the day, after you’ve put everyone else first, don’t forget to look in the mirror and show the person you see some kindness. Think of all the positive things you’ve done over the last 24 hours and be grateful for any and all small successes.
Never underestimate your ability to make an impact on your community. By boosting just one person’s spirits, you could spark a ripple effect that creates a more loving environment for everyone. It sounds cliché but that old saying is right: if you want things to be better, you need to be the change you want to see in the world.