“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” Aesop
Researchers have found that being kind could boost happiness in as little as three days. Another study shows giving seems to lessen our pain. Yet another says giving donations to others has been shown to reduce blood pressure and improve heart health. Volunteering has been shown to minimize stress and improve depression. I could keep going, but I feel like you get it.
National Random Acts of Kindness Day is February 17th, and there are so many easy ways to celebrate it. Here are 10 suggestions.
- If you’re appreciative of the extra work that teachers, aides, principals, etc. are putting in during this difficult year, write them a note to let them know. Have your child(ren) add something specific that they have learned or enjoyed about school this year.
- Kansas City’s own Hallmark has several collections, including a line of Quarantine Cards, to help you send positive vibes.
- Grab an extra latte on your way to work for your co-worker who loves caffeine (bonus points if you know their favorite drink).
- Give your time. There are several great places you can volunteer around Kansas City (a pandemic doesn’t stop the need for help!) including Harvesters-The Community Food Network in KCMO, and Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas in Overland Park and Mission.
- Send a text to a friend that you haven’t seen for awhile, and tell her one of the reasons you’re happy she’s in your life.
- Donate goods. On the Children’s Mercy website, you can see their current donation needs like toys and art supplies. Or go online and give $10 (or $50, or whatever you can) to one of the great area charities. Variety KC is one of my favorites. They provide inclusive opportunities (equipment, devices, playgrounds) for children right here in the Kansas City area.
- If you go out to eat, leave an extra big tip for your server. If you get food delivered, overtip the driver!
- Get on social media and start following a Kansas City business (or two) that you love, and leave positive comments on their posts to help amplify their message.
- Share your talent. If you’re a good photographer, offer to take updated family pictures for a friend. If you’re great at writing resumes, help someone who’s looking for a job. Good baker? Take a neighbor some of your delicious goodies.
- Compliment a stranger. I was in a coffee shop in Overland Park a few weeks ago and there was a woman with gorgeous, curly, bright red hair all piled up in a beautiful messy bun on top of her head. When she passed by me on her way out, I couldn’t help but blurt out, “You have the most BEAUTIFUL hair.” She broke out in a huge, bright smile, and said, “You are so sweet!” So really, the compliment came right back to me.
Maybe, just maybe, instead of only engaging in acts of kindness on the one day that’s set aside for it, we could try to make a habit of it. Here’s to being randomly kind!