Random Acts of Kindness

Acts of Kindness – Project Summary

Here is an overview of our mini project: Random Acts of Kindness. This post provides links to pertinent aspects of this project, so that you won’t have to sift through the archives to find out what you want to know.

Our original idea and statement of intent is here.

If you would like to try this project for yourself, you can start on Day One: A Shoe Story, and then continue on thru Day Ten: New Years Resolutions posting your thoughts, ideas, results, joys and disappointments as you go. This is an active blog, and if you post, we will notice and reply.. and give you the benefit of our own experience and our support if it seems pertinent or appropriate.

You can find complete listing of the day by day links at the bottom of this post.

The basic summary of our results is not posted. This is because our random acts of kindness project was an exercise in simple kindness. To have practiced kindness for monetary gain would have defeated the purpose of the concept.

As promised, here is the complete listing of the daily posts for the Random Acts of Kindness 10 day project:

New Years Resolutions

 

From Humor Matters here are some alternative affirmations for the new year.

“At the end of one year and the start of another, many of us will renew our commitment to living with daily affirmations. I know the power of affirming my truth, over and over, everyday! While these may not suit every one’s taste, here are some “possible” affirmations to consider!”

  1.  As I let go of my feelings of guilt, I am in touch with my inner sociopath.
  2. I have the power to channel my imagination into ever-soaring levels of suspicion and paranoia.
  3. I assume full responsibility for my actions, except the ones that are someone else’s fault.
  4. In some cultures what I do would be considered normal.
  5. My intuition nearly makes up for my lack of wisdom and judgment.
  6. I need not suffer in silence while I can still moan, whimper, and complain.
  7. When someone hurts me, I know that forgiveness is cheaper than a lawsuit, but not nearly as rewarding.
  8. I am at one with my duality.
  9. Blessed are the flexible, for they can tie themselves in knots.
  10. I will strive to live each day as if it were my 50th birthday.
  11. I honor and express all facets of my being, regardless of state and local laws.
  12. Today I will gladly share my experience and advice, for there are no sweeter words than “I told you so!”
  13. A scapegoat is almost as good as a solution.
  14. Just for today, I will not sit in my living room all day in my underwear. Instead, I will move my computer into the bedroom.
  15. I will no longer waste my time reliving the past; I will spend it worrying about the future?
  16. The complete lack of evidence is the surest proof that the conspiracy is working.
  17. Before I criticize a man, I walk a mile in his shoes. That way, if he gets angry, he’s a mile away and barefoot.

Food for thought

 I love this picture.

I believe that inside each one of us there lives someone who is this vulnerable, this tender, this delicate, this new, and this beautiful. What do you think? Do you think that’s true?

What if we could see the people around us in the same light that we see this picture? What if we felt this way about ourselves? What if we treated our environment and our relationships with the same tenderness that would treat this little being?

If my mom and dad looked at this picture, they would say that God is the hands and we are the baby (unless we aren’t Christians in which case we will burn in hell)… and I would love to believe that there is a loving “father” God who would hold me this tenderly and gently, in whom I could rest so completely and safely.. How does your image or idea of “God” relate to this picture?

We have a “new” year starting up. What do you think would happen if we treated each new day of this new year with the same reverence and awe that this image inspires?

Here’s a life changing action

Beginning today, treat everyone you meet as if they were going to be dead by midnight. Extend to them all the care, kindness and understanding you can muster, and do it with no thought of any reward. Your life will never be the same again.
~Og Mandino

This is an image of Kwan Yin. She is one of the most universally beloved of deities in the Buddhist tradition. She is the embodiment of compassionate loving kindness. As the Bodhisattva of Compassion, She hears the cries of all beings.

You can read a lovely story about her at Urban Dharma

Thoughtfulness is Kindness

Sometimes showing kindness is a quick action that simply shows others you are being thoughtful:

  • Open the door for another person
  • Smile. Share a smile with family members, co-workers, and even strangers. A smile is a great way to boost someone’s day.
  • Pick up a piece of trash you see on the ground.
  • Encourage your children to show kindness at school.
  • They can make a new student feel welcome; write a thank-you note to their teacher, principal or custodian; wave to their crossing guard; share their snack; or encourage a classmate who seems lonely or is having a bad day.
  • Help someone by picking up something they dropped.
  • Call a family member who lives far away and tell them you love them.
  • Do a chore without being asked.
  • Shovel snow, take out the garbage, rake the leaves or cook a dinner for your neighbor.
  • Take a box of donuts or flowers to work for your co-workers, or even for the office/business next to yours.
  • Take the time to listen to someone you know is having a bad day.
  • Tell your boss, co-worker, teacher, classmate or family member why you appreciate them.
  • Donate blood.
  • Write a thank you note to someone who has influenced your life: a mentor, a teacher, a family member.
  • Tip your restaurant server generously.
  • Pay for the person behind you in the fast food drive-thru or at the toll booth.
  • Give at least one compliment to somebody every day.

Lets Go Shopping

Today is one of the biggest shopping days of the year. So I thought I would post a shopping list for everything I could find at Amazon that features Random Acts of Kindness.

I was really surprised at how many books there are on the subject. Only a partial listing is included here because there were so many!

Be Kind to Mother Earth

Kindness is not just about showing respect and care for humans, but for creation and animals, as well. Caring for the environment is a way to show kindness to everyone else who lives in it. Teach your children how pollution and trash affect the environment, and find a way to protect it together as a family. Ideas include:

  • Plant a tree.
  • Make a birdhouse together as a family project, then place it in your backyard. Or make a simple bird feeder using a pine cone, peanut butter and birdseed.
  • Recycle. If your garbage pickup service doesn’t include recycling bins, find a local drop-off center.
  • Be energy-efficient. Turn off lights when not in use, don’t waste water, consider car-pooling to work and school.
  • Call a local animal shelter and find out what they are in need of. Then have your family help them out — it may be simply donating a few bags of dog food, or it may be donating time in caring for the animals.
  • Set aside a time each day to play with your pet. Get your whole family involved in running around the back yard with your dog or playing with your cat. Be sure your animals are clean and healthy.
  • In the summer, notify authorities immediately if you find a pet left in a hot car.
  • Cut up plastic six-pack rings before disposing of them so that animals don’t get caught in them.
  • Participate in beach cleanups.
  • “Adopt” an animal through a local zoo, aquarium or other organization.
  • Switch to a pet-safe antifreeze. Those containing propylene glycol have an appealing taste to animals; however it is fatal in very small doses (such as leaks on your driveway).
  • Clean up trash and refrain from littering. If you smoke, use your car’s ashtray, not the road, to dispose of your cigarette butts.

Here are some easy ideas.

My Religion is simple. My religion is kindness
~The Dalai Lama

I found a list of ideas for our Kindness Project:

  • Collect canned goods for a local food bank.
  • Help serve dinner at a local homeless shelter.
  • Donate time at a senior citizen home.
  • Donate books to the library.
  • Spend an afternoon with a homebound person. Take the time to talk with them; see if they need any help with chores or running errands.
  • Bake a treat and deliver it to a police or fire station.
  • Offer to baby-sit for a single parent.

For more great ideas for showing kindness through your community groups, schools, family and workplace, visit the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation

Current Project
In our current project, we are exploring the concept that "What You Focus On Grows, and energy flows to where attention goes. The project begins on July 1st. and runs through July 30th. More info here. Feel free to join in at any time.
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I think it's time to go shopping... maybe even buy some really cool stuff at my online shops!!

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