Kindness Matters

“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted”   – Aesop –

After a long day’s work on a wet, dreary, dark night, I was travelling to Mayo to visit my mum, who wasn’t well, for the weekend. Not really looking forward to the three hour journey, I was tired and low.  I arrived at the toll booth, window down, rain beating in on me as I scrambled around the car looking for coins. Face wet, I reached to hand the coins to the attendant who immediately waved me through and told me the previous driver had paid for my toll.  Really?  What?  Why?  Can you imagine what I was asking.  Why would someone do this? Why?  At the same time, a great big smile spread across my face, the feeling that someone had thought of someone else and expect nothing in return.  Suddenly, I knew why they did it.  To make me feel the way I did.  I had a smile on my face for weeks, I still smile when I tell the story and have paid lots of tolls and paid it forward many times since then.  Why? So that I can spread a smile on someone else’s face.

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Kindness is free. It doesn’t have to cost anything at all to give it. By doing random acts of kindness, you not only benefit others, but the feeling you are left within yourself is priceless. It doesn’t require training of any kind, just a decision to do it.

Be challenged to do one act of kindness every day, no matter how small and share with us how you got on.

 

Ideas … that cost nothing

  • Give someone a great big smile
  • Say Good Morning to those around you
  • Give someone a hug
  • Carry someone’s bag for them
  • Listen, and really listen to what someone is saying …
  • Ask how someone’s day is
  • Acknowledge someone’s presence, meet friends or family as if it is for the first time
  • Bake a cake or scones or bread and leave for someone
  • Notice someone having a bad day and leave a kind note for them
  • Affirm what someone is trying to do, thank them for their efforts
  • Talk to a homeless person
  • Give someone a compliment
  • Visit someone who is sick
  • Mind a friend’s child
  • Leave a treat on a colleague’s desk
  • Open a door to let someone through
  • Give some time to a charity or a community project
  • Write a Thank You note
  • Pack someone’s shopping for them
  • Visit a neighbour
  • Give your unused coupons or loyalty points to the next person in the shopping queue
  • Think of one of your own

Ideas … that cost something

  • Pay for someone’s coffee and leave a kindness card
  • Leave a coffee or tea beside a homeless person in the street
  • Pay for someone’s parking or toll fee
  • Donate to charity
  • Leave a bar of chocolate for someone … at school, at work, at home
  • Pay for someone’s hair, nail, massage treatment

Kindness for yourself

One of the most important things is to be kind to yourself.  We need to nourish ourselves so that we can look after and be kind to others.

  • Make an appointment with yourself for some ‘me’ time
  • Do something you love, e.g. a hobby, interest, something you are passionate about
  • Go for a walk
  • Pamper yourself
  • Exercise
  • Reward yourself for an achievement
  • Meditate and breathe easy
  • Stop and notice all the beauty around you.
  • Be grateful
  • Spend some time with friends

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