Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Random Acts of Kindness

I’m not sure where I first spotted the phrase “random act of kindness” or "RAOK", but I am seeing it more and more. I love this idea and I am jumping on this train!

In efforts to be completely honest I must admit...I genuinely enjoy doing stuff for people. When people are in need, I want to help them. I like surprising people with random gifts or services. I never finished reading that Five Languages of Love book, but I am pretty sure service or gifts would be my love-language.

I have compiled a small list of ideas that help inspire me to do random acts of kindness. I have divided the ideas into two sections. First a “Service” section which is exactly as it sounds, giving of your time or service just to brighten someone's day or lend a helping hand. Second is the section where it may cost you money, donations, or support in a monetary form. Don't get me wrong, I am not saying that your time is not valuable, I just find it easier to divide the list this way. I also have boards on Pinterest devoted to gifts ideas and food gifts. If you are looking for ideas, the possibilities are endless! Here are a few ideas:
Time/service:   
Hold the door open for people - so simple but a kind act.
Allow someone to move in front of you in line - that mom with one item and an upset child.
Allow someone to merge in traffic - sometimes this is hard to do...
Clear snow off someone’s car - the other day after my class an older lady was clearing off her car with no gloves and in heels. I cleared my car and helped her with the other half of hers. It took almost no extra time (my car was warming anyway).
Shovel someone's driveway or sidewalk
Rake leaves
Pick up trash
Return your shopping cart to the store – or someone else’s for them
Compliment people - again, very simple but really could make someone's day
Help someone move
Call a friend or relative to say hi, ask how they are doing
Volunteer - there are so many opportunties to help if you're looking
Write a former teacher a thank you note - I need to do this!
Donate blood
Leave positive feedback on a blog - hint hint.... :)
Support a charity by volunteering/collecting - you can support your favorite charity in more ways than just donating money. You can fundraise for them. My family and I are doing our local Heart Run/Walk at the end of April to raise money for the American Heart Association. (This did cost me $20 entry though.)
Use your talent for good
Donate your time to teach someone your talent
Gifts:
Carepacks for homeless or for your local shelter
Pay for someone’s meal/coffee without them knowing - I've never done this but I really want to!
Thank you cards, gifts, food gifts for military, police officers, fire dept, emt workers, hospital workers. My family made Christmas care packages to thank the nurses at Sacred Heart Hospital in Spokane for all they did for my husband's cousin.
 
Send a letter/card in the mail to anyone - think about it, we all love to receive mail that isn't a bill.
Adopt a soldier (and family)
Cook a meal for someone
Donate your unused stuff (clothes, toys, other)
Send flowers
Send a care package - I wrote about this one I did for D's family
Thank your mail carrier
Bake someone a cake, cookies, bread
Gift baskets - I am a big fan of gift baskets!
Bring someone a coffee
Leave change on a vending machine
Pay for someone’s groceries
Support a charity by donating money
Sponsor a family for the holidays
Sponsor a child
 
This is obviously not a list of everything you can do to be kind, but it's an idea list. I would love for you to share your ideas! Leave a comment

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