There are times when it seems that there is just far too much hate in the world. Wars, terrorism, racism, bigotry – some days the news seems to be full of nothing else. There are times when I feel overwhelmed by the things I read and see on the news, wondering what on earth I can do to make any difference at all? I am just one person, one small voice. There is very little I can do to change the world on a big scale – but I can make my own little corner of it a happier place. I can focus on trying to be a better person, trying to be kinder, trying to be more patient.
It’s not always easy. There are days when my temper is all too short, when unkind words seem to come more easily than encouraging ones. There are days when doubt and negativity and complaint and criticism seem to be my default setting. I try to focus on being a nicer, kinder person and it often feels like I take three steps forward and two back. I am human – I am imperfect. All I can do is continue to try and to find little ways in which I can be kinder to others and share a little love in my world.
35 ways of showing kindness to others:
1) Giving someone my time and attention.
2) Donating to charity.
3) Donating unwanted clothes to a homeless shelter or charity shop.
4) Baking a cake for a friend.
5) Leaving a random note of encouragement for a stranger to find.
6) Being alert to the needs of others and trying to meet those needs if I can.
7) Making an effort to say thank you to someone for providing a good service or for being there in a time of need.
8) Switching off my phone and being completely present in the moment, giving my family my full attention.
9) Picking up some litter in my local area.
10) Making the effort to chat with someone who is new to a group I attend.
11) Trying to make ethical choices when shopping.
12) Making sure I am on time when meeting someone.
13) Being mindful of my consumption of resources and re-using and recycling where possible to help reduce my own impact on the environment.
14) Picking up a few extra items when doing my food shopping to give to the local foodbank.
15) Being willing to say yes when volunteers are asked for.
16) Biting my tongue when those hurtful words rise up.
17) Making the effort to apologise when I have been in the wrong.
18) Forgiving someone else for something that they have done wrong.
19) Writing a letter to a friend or sending them something out of the blue.
20) Buying a hot drink and something to eat to give to a homeless person.
21) Taking the time to really listen to someone else.
22) Making the effort to compliment someone, or passing on an overheard compliment to them.
23) Taking time to pray for someone in need.
24) Making up a gift box or basket for someone who would really appreciate it.
25) Putting a surprise note in hubby’s work bag to let him know I’m thinking of him.
26) Donating blood.
27) Standing up for someone else when others are being unkind about them.
28) Sending someone some flowers.
29) Holding open the door for someone.
31) Being polite.
32) Passing on a book I love to someone who I know will also enjoy it.
33) Surprising someone with an unexpected gift.
34) Giving someone a hug when they are having a tough day (providing they are happy to accept a hug!)
35) Being kind to myself and making sure I have time to top up my own emotional reserves too – after all, you can’t pour from an empty jug!
Are there any other small acts of kindness that you would add to this list?