Here we are at the beginning of another year and another decade. 1990 was thirty years ago and 2050 is thirty years ahead of us, WOW!! Now that blows my mind. 1990 feels way closer to this year than 2050 but the reality is, it’s not!
As we enter this new year, one thing that I believe the world needs more of is kindness. Right now, there are four states in Australia on fire, and I mean seriously bad fire. Homes being lost, lives being lost, and a huge amount of distress and suffering for those people in the affected areas. On the other side of the globe, there is a dead Iranian military commander with thousands mourning his death and tensions rising between Iran and the US. In addition to that, six German tourists have been killed by a drunk driver in Italy, and Turkey is right now deploying troops to Libya. And that’s just today’s news.
It can really get a person down if they choose to watch the news. In fact it can make you feel really powerless in this big, crazy world we live in (and on that note, I would suggest not watching the news if you want to be truly happy).
So how do you feel more empowered to change that world? There’s a quote I like based on Ghandi’s words that goes “Be the change you want to see in the world”.
For me, I long for a world full of kindness and love and that means I must act with even more kindness and love. I have put together a list of 20 acts of kindness: simple acts that anyone can do any day of the week and which will leave the world a little bit brighter and shinier. Here they are:
- Call someone you know who is lonely or doesn’t get much human contact. That might be your grandma or a friend who is struggling in life. Reach out, have a chat, give them your time, and pay them some attention.
- Give someone a genuine compliment – a compliment is a little gift of words that always brightens someone’s day. Make sure it’s authentic.
- Smile more – smiling is contagious. If you smile at someone the chance of them smiling back in response is very high, and when they do, you have brightened their day (and yours!).
- Donate to a disaster fund. Right now there are so many causes that need help. If you are Australian, I am sure you have seen some of the organisations who are collecting to help people affected by the fires. Here is a link to help you decide which one to donate to.
- Hug someone – human touch is so incredibly important for great health and vitality. Not only does it cause the release of oxytocin, the bonding hormone, it has been proven to reduce blood pressure and reduce our heart rate, amongst other things.
- Give away items you no longer need or use to a shelter – reduce, reuse and recycle. Not only is it good energetically speaking to clear out stuff you no longer use, it also helps others who are in need.
- Express your gratitude. Gratitude has one of the highest vibrational frequencies, so the more we live in gratitude, the better it is for the world.
- Help someone. Any small act of kindness helps – carry a bag for someone, let someone into the queue ahead of you, hold a door open for the person behind you. It’s a 20 second act that leaves a far reaching legacy.
- Give someone your full attention. In our busy world, we have become really good at spreading our attention out rather thinly. Honour the person you are with by giving them your FULL attention. Listen to their words, let them finish speaking before you interrupt, ask them questions, and put your phone away.
- Tell your loved ones what exactly you appreciate about them. We sometimes forget to tell the people closest to us what we love about them, yet that can change their whole day. Give your kindness and love in words.
- Choose kind words when you speak. Think before you say something and choose words that will uplift. Any message can be delivered with elegance and love, even a challenging one.
- Do a task for someone without being asked to. How good is it when you come home and one of your tasks has been done for you by someone else? Do that for someone in your world.
- Buy the person behind you in the line a coffee. I remember the first time this ever happened to me – I felt like I had won lotto! It’s a small $4 act that is full of good feelings for the receiver.
- Send a thank you card in the mail. Snail mail is almost a thing of the past which means receiving a card in the mail can be very special for the recipient. Take a moment to jot down a note and send some love and kindness in the post.
- Put a love note in your child or partner’s lunch box. What a beautiful surprise for the person you love to find some kind words when they sit down to eat their lunch.
- Give positive feedback. We live in a world that constantly reviews. Jump on an online site and leave positive praise for a business or service you have used.
- Use less plastic – this is one act of kindness our planet desperately and urgently needs right now!!
- Donate blood, plasma, bone marrow or breast milk. Donating any of these will be greatly assisting the recipient. A random gift I know, but often it is a life-saving one!
- Forgive someone who has wronged you. Yes, this can be challenging, but there is no greater gift of kindness you can give yourself or the other person. Forgiveness is not condoning the behaviour, it is the letting go of your own suffering whilst also being kind..
- Look in the mirror and tell yourself that you love yourself. This is something I task every single coaching client with. We will only be as kind to others as we are to ourselves, so get good at giving yourself some love. Check out this article to understand more about mirror work.
Wishing you a very kind, loving, happy and healthy 2020.