It’s crazy how a small act of kindness can change the course of someone’s entire day.
After an on-stage competition I recently competed in, the stage crew told my grandparents that out of the 22 participants, I was only one of two who ever said thank you to them. And, they added that *that* was why they love their job. My sister works stage crew at our local high school, so she knows how hard and thankless that job can be.
With negativity constantly in today’s society, it can be hard to remember that *we* have the power to make a small difference in someone’s day. We don’t have to devote hours volunteering at a homeless shelter or spend millions feeding the hungry (although nothing is wrong with either) to spread a little kindness in our daily lifestyles.
It’s crazy how something as simple as smiling at people can change the course of their entire day. Plus, kindness is free.
2. Pass out a genuine compliment
Anything from “That’s a cute shirt!” to “I like your hair!” can brighten someone’s day and bring a smile to their face. Who knows? You could strike up an interesting conversation with someone.
3. Say please and thank you
Saying thank you seems to be a lost art in society, but it has grown into a habit for me. Especially for thankless but important jobs – retail workers, janitors, behind the scenes crew – a meaningful thank you can brighten someone’s day. Writing and mailing a thank you note can also be a thoughtful way to show you care.
4. Leave change at a vending machine
At the gym, at school, or at work, leave a dollar or two at a vending machine for the next person!
5. Pay for the person behind you
To see your money in “action,” at a drive-through, pay for the person behind you, or for a random couple you see out at dinner. This will definitely make a lasting impression!
For hands-on giving, volunteering can come in many forms. You can volunteer at a homeless shelter, or to help cut a neighbor’s lawn. Unexpected kind gestures can go a long way!
7. Visit the elderly
Whether it be playing piano at a nursing home, or making an unexpected visit to your grandparents, respecting the elderly and listening to their stories and wisdom will definitely make their day!
8. Bake cookies for the local firefighters or police officers
We often bake cookies/cake for our local fire station. (Ok, my dad works there, but still.) Most firefighters and police officers love this!
9. Write someone a handmade letter
In the age of digital media, writing a handmade letter can go a long way, and it is a great way to show someone you care. Not really your type? Leave a friend a kind message on social media.
10. Treat others the way you want to be treated
This one seems basic and very cliche, but treating people right is everything. Returning a wallet or holding the door open can mean the world to someone going through a rough patch in life.