Only ten more days to go until our Kindness Challenge comes to a close and we go back to our regular lives. Hopefully you'll take some of the experiences that you've done on this challenge into your future and allow them to become a regular part of your life.
Today we celebrate our country's birthday! It was a day to just kick back and relax and allow kindness to flow without any kind of "forced" energy. Meera, my Great Dane, and I went to the local Fourth of July event and just enjoyed people's company! Kids of all ages love to come up and talk to and pet Meera and I am really just there to hold the lease and facilitate introductions! I also answer any questions that Meera refuses to ask. (It's pretty hilarious how many people ask Meera questions and really expect her to answer!! "Oh, you're a pretty girl! How old you? Huh? How old are you sweetie? Are you a good girl?") Sometimes I just wait and let them interpret her answers how they may, but since I'm in the middle of a Kindness Challenge, I didn't think that quite appropriate!
But we had the best time talking to friends and meeting new ones. The music was awesome and the fireworks were beautiful as always.
I hope everyone had a happy and healthy fourth and were able to enjoy some time with family and friends!
Going above and beyond. Maybe your kindness is doing just that little bit extra that you were not asked to do or no one expected you to do.
This is an easy thing to do at the workplace. I know you have your specific list of things that need to be done every time you go to work, but what is something extra you could do. And I don't mean something that you're going to gain attention for. Keep it a secret unless you can't avoid it. Some things you could do..
Buy flavored creamer for the break room.
Buy donoughts for the co-workers.
Take on a cleaning or organizing task.
Help out a co-worker if you get finished early.
Leave a note on someone's desk complimenting them.
Buy a gift card to a local restaurant and slip it in someone's drawer.
Take on the task that no one likes to do. Harangue someone to help you do it!
Send everyone an encouraging (not butt-kissing) e-mail!
Have fun with this challenge! Find ways to hand out kindness no matter where you are. Why not the job? A lot of people really do not like where they work. Why not bring them a little happiness and make this one day not so dismal!
Have a fun day loving your co-workers!!
My mom came to visit me this weekend and we decided to walk along our "Old Town Main Street". It is a cobblestone street that has shops and restaurants lining either side and all are so inviting! As many times as I have walked those blocks, I still enjoy going into all the shops.
In one little shop there was an older woman, with beautiful white hair. She wore this light blue blouse that just brought out her eyes. As we were leaving, I commented to her, "That top is beautiful. It's a perfect color for you!" And we continued out. A few steps outside the shop my mom said, "You really made her happy."
"That was my plan," I laughed.
"No really, you made her happy. You didn't have to do that. But I'm glad you did."
We talked more about it and how I love to see people smile when you give them a sincere compliment. So, we made it a game. One person, per store, we'd give a compliment.
We had SUCH fun loving on others as we walked down the street from store to store collecting smiles as we went. Kindness is fun by yourself, but so much more fun sharing it with someone else!!
Give it a try! Find a coconspirator and get out there a
"All I'm saying is, kindness don't have no boundaries." - Kathryn Stockett, The Help
No matter where you are or what you do or what your station in life is, you can offer kindness to others. Kindness doesn't fit into borders, or income brackets or even species. It was meant to be shared. You don't have to "only" be kind to this type of person or pet. You can pretty much bring a smile to anyone's face with the simplest act or word, and even minimal effort.
Kindness is just a way of life. You can find ways to be kind to others every where you look. Any city, any town, walk of life. Look for simple ways that you can be kind today.
Today, kindness was needed in the listening area. Sometimes I have my "kindness acts" all planned out so that I can try new things or just surprise people with love, but today, I was called to just be still and listen.
Listening is a kindness all it's own. It shows that you care. It shows that (like all the other acts of kindness) that you have nothing to gain, but you freely give your gift of time to someone else.
It's not about having the right advice. (Which is my automatic "go-to gut reaction... I'm a fixer.) It's not about fixing. Sometimes someone in your life just needs to share. Share their joys, their sorrows, their good news, and it's our job just to listen and support.
This is not the time to tell your own story. This is not the time to share a similar experience that happened to you. This is not the time to take away the limelight of their joy. It's the perfect time to be still and listen.
That was my kindness today, and the joy I felt first, in being honored that I am the one they chose to unburden to, relate to, and share good times with, cannot be expressed in words. I'm glad God reminds me from time to time that "it's not always about me". I am glad to have learned, finally, that it is okay not to have some all-knowing wisdom to pass on, or the need to "one-up" or even "one-down" someone else's joys and trials, but to just be the sounding board for someone else to share with.
I am always here for advice or council, but I am also here, just to be a friend. And it makes me happy to do either.
Happy days, my friends! Be still and listen. It's amazing what you will learn!
Congratulations!!! We've made it to the half-way marker!! How have you been doing so far with the Kindness Challenge? Are you making progress? Have you seen differences? How has the Kindness Challenge changed you or your perspective about others?
As I have said before, I believe that in general, I am a pretty kind person. I was raised that way. I was taught to be polite and humble, honest and to always put other's comforts above my own. My mother has instilled these virtues in my from my youth and I hope that I have passed that on to my children as well.
But it seems to be a different time, these days. As I was growing up, everyone was pretty much taught the same values. So as I was being kind to others, it was being returned to me. Not because I asked for it, but because that's how their parents taught them as well. These days, it seems like those are lessons lost. We seem to be in the ME generation where you always look out for "numero uno". Which is sad. Because if we are only looking out for ourselves, what happens when we get stuck?
We were not created to be solo creatures. That's why we all have different skill sets. We were created to thrive in tribes, communities, groups, and families. We were designed to help one another and when we got stuck, someone would be there to help us.
But sadly, it seems that we are pulling further and further away from that structure, and it's going to take a concentrated effort to return to any semblance of that former life-style. That's why things like the Kindness Challenge are so important. It brings back into focus the things that are important. Stop looking at yourself for just a moment and take a look at those around you. What can you do to help your fellow man? What kind words can you say to change someone's day? Look outward. Find your tribe. Put others first. You'll be amazed at the return you get. It was His plan, when you take care of those around you, you , in turn, will be taken care of.
Have an awesome, love- giving kind of day!
Hang in there, we're HALF-WAY through the whole 30 days!!
Today, I'm having a yard sale and let me tell you that some of the people showing up here are really putting my kindness challenge to the test!! Lol!! People are sometimes rude and judgmental and when they look through your things and decide the value of such things is far less than you think, it kinda stings a little. And some people are not very nice about it at all.
So, my personal challenge today is to smile through it all, remind myself that we're all looking for a "good deal" and that it's only stuff. It's not any indication to the person that I am or the person I'm becoming, it's just stuff. Stuff to cook with, stuff to sit on, stuff to decorate with, stuff to play with... it represents different parts of my life as to what I was interested in at that time. But I've moved on to different interests...
"Give you a dollar for that?"
I smile, "Sure."
It's just... stuff.
Triskaidekaphobia... Don't let that stop you from being kind today!! The fear of the number 13 should only add to your resolve!! Tell yourself you're going to do 13 kind things today.
- Buy 13 cups of coffee for others
-Leave 13 post-it notes everywhere
-Tell 13 people that they are beautiful.
- Hug 13 people
- Volunteer to take 13 dogs for a walk
- Sign up for 13 days of volunteer work
- Mail 13 feel-good greeting cards to those you haven't seen in a while
- Send out 13 "I love you" texts!
-Give 13 random people a flower
It's a great day to get out there and do 13 kind things for others!!
Kindness can be as simple as a post-it note. Sometimes my favorite way to show someone that I am thinking of them or to make sure they know they are loved is through post-it notes. They are the perfect messenger for tiny little love notes and can really make someone's day!
I use the post-its for my family and friends with little notes that say things like, "Just to let you know I'm thinking of you." or, "I am proud of you." or "thank you for (fill in the blank), "good luck on your (fill in the blank). There are a million little ways to tell someone that they are important to you. You can encourage some one with just a few words. It's really cool to think about, as you go about your day you're wondering when they will find their post-it. Will they mention it to you? Will they know it's from you? Or if you snuck it in some where- ninja like- will they figure out its you? Tee hee! It's these things that keep me giggling internally day after day!
Today, I'm going to try random post-its. I'm making generic phrases that I can drop off on the window of a car, or slip in someone's bag... I'm getting excited just thinking of the possibilities!! THIS is going to be a fun day!!
This is getting tricky. Not the being kind part, but the keeping up with everything part! Now I understand why no one accepted the challenge!
I had no idea when I started this project, how much time it would take up. again, not the being kind part, but remembering to write a little blog every day and to respond to others that have questions or need ideas and don't even get me started in how I've fallen behind in publicity!! I know! Shame on me! But since there's probably only three of you reading this, perhaps you will forgive me when I promise to do better!
Have a happy love-giving day!
Elizabeth Bourgeret is a teen-life coach and Christian fiction author. She is the creator of the teen life skills event called Total Truth Workshop.