Monday, February 21, 2011

Random Acts of Kindness

The other day as I was leaving my Social Psychology class, a group of girls next to me knocked over a bottle of water so I ran to pick it up and give it to them. As I handed the bottle to one of the girls she said, "Oh ugh that's not ours," and tossed it back onto the ground. At this point I was already out the door so I could make it to my bus on time, but as I saw this, I thought to myself: when did people get so self-absorbed? When did people cease to care about others and making other people's lives easier and instead focused all of their attention on only things that directly impacted them?

I think it's a sad day when people are so busy twittering and facebooking that they can't take the time to hold the door open for someone, or just look up from their phones and just smile.

I'm a big fan of random acts of kindness. A huge fan! I think one of my favorite feelings in the world is when I do something that I know (or sometimes I don't know) will bring a smile to someone's face or make their day easier. It makes my heart feel like it's bursting with smiley faces..seriously.

Not only does being kind to others help that person feel good, but it makes the doer feel good and the recipient is more likely to "pay it forward."
For those of you who simply aren't the kind (heh) of person to do some random kind act for someone just because it will make their day, think about the benefits to you (if you have to):
Performing random acts of kindness...:
  • causes the doer to feel happier
  • can help increase the health of the doer (lowers blood pressure, alleviates pain, etc)
  • relaxes the doer 
  • increases feelings of connectedness
  • etc.
If that's not enough to make you want to make someone's day...I don't know what will motivate you!! For those of you who are onboard, here are some suggestions for some random acts of kindness:
  • give someone a genuine compliment (according to a study done by Drs. Luks and Paynes, you should give at least 2 genuine compliments a day)
  • say thank you and mean it
  • hold the door open for someone
  • help someone when they spill something
  • smile!
  • give up your seat to an elderly person on the bus
  • leave a note for your mail carrier (I love doing this :-)
  • if you know a friend/coworker etc has a favorite ____, (muffin,cookie, drink) leave one on their desk or hand them one (I <3 doing this one too). It's a simple way to show that you listen to them and care.
  • send someone a handwritten thank you note
  • give money or time to the less fortunate
  • if you see trash, pick it up and throw it away
  • etc!
Keep Reading!


  1. I like random acts of kindness. They make EVERYONE'S day.

    I just sent my Grandma a handwritten note. She likes those. I like getting them too. They're a nice break from junk and bills.

  2. aww i like random kind acts too! if only there were more people in the world like you and me! lol. and 'leave a letter for the mailman' is new to me! what do you say to him??

    also, THANK GOD you FINALLY wrote today! i was going through blog withdrawals lol. and can i make another blog suggestion please? can you make it so the comments pop up in a separate window so i can still see the post while i'm commenting (if that makes sense)? if you don't like the idea, no worries but i just prefer it and thought i'd put it out there lol. xo.

  3. @Whitney: handwritten notes are so special :-)

    @Rachel: I normally just tell them thank you and wish them well...let them know they're appreciated etc. I'm glad you like my blog. That makes me smile :-)
    Also, about the comment thingie...I'm completely computer illiterate but I'll see what I can do...k? If nothing else I think you should be able to right-click on the comment link and then press "open in new page" or "open in new tab"??

  4. Ouch. I wouldn't worry about that incident too much, though; I'd guess you simply happened to run into a member of the impolite minority of humans. Most people are quite nice/polite/will hold doors for you and so on, in my experience. That's why when you run into the occasional non-nice person, it makes an impression on you.

    Generally, Twitter/Facebook/text/electroniking while walking is not a good idea, for safety reasons alone.

  5. True true and related! Although it seems I see far more of the minority than the majority!
    It goes beyond just following social norms by opening a my opinion...a random act of kindness is when someone is paying attention to the world around them and notices when someone could use a smile or help. Etc. Random acts of kindness are the kinds of things that someone would write in their diary abt lol