21-Day Kindness Project: Day 1
brings out the best in our natures
– Bob Kerrey
Pay it Forward with a Surprise Treat:
Today we start our intentional daily kindness. It might mean stepping out of our comfort zone a bit on some days, but I hope you stay with it. It can be easier to stay inside the effortless familiar, but in this kindness challenge the point is to stretch and find new ways to connect. The rewards are often great. Gifting kindness to others often makes our own lives broader and richer, while doing the same for the receiver. It is rare that something so seemingly small gives so much return.
Today, let’s start with something simple. Gift a treat. Food is simple, but it is also a way to physically and emotionally nourish ourselves and others. Giving or sharing food can be a lovely symbolic gesture of giving “care” to someone. This act of kindness is especially powerful when it comes from a stranger or someone you do not know well. So today, do what moves you, but here are some ideas: Pay it forward with $5 to the cashier at your favorite cafe and ask them to gift it to the next person’s purchase, or buy a sandwich for a person without a home who is going through hard times. You could buy a gift card at your local coffee house or cafe and give it away.
If you still have fruits or veggies from your garden, you might bring them in to your office colleagues to share, or leave them out on a table in your front yard with a “free” sign. Or bake or buy a treat and give it as a surprise to a neighbor you don’t know well, someone who recently moved into the neighborhood, or someone who works hard in your in your office but works behind the scenes and is chronically under appreciated. If none of that feels inspiring, you might buy some food, perhaps something a bit special, and put it in the donation food bin at your local grocery store, or drop it off at a food bank.
Unanticipated kindness is disarming and your small act might help restore someone’s faith in the goodness of humanity.