What does it mean to be kind? Is it something we can learn, or is it a quality that is in each of us innately, we just have to figure out how to unleash it?
Oxford dictionary defines it as; the quality of being friendly, generous, and considerate. But that doesn’t help with the question of, “Can we learn to be kind?”
Nature or nurture, there is always more we can do to extend kindness to others. So with Random Acts of kindness day last weekend on the 17th, let’s think what we can do to make the kindness go on into this week, month, year…
As the picture above states; Kindness is love in action, so as a team, we decided to take our love to the streets of our local town, and offer free hugs. Here is a snapshot of what happened;
Now I cannot say that I found it all that easy (I am the one in the pink stripy jumper). In fact it was a challenge. But, with the kindness and encouragement from the rest of our team, I did it, I hugged a stranger! You know what the biggest thrill was… Having initially been hugged by Greg and Scott, our kindness to the lady I ended up hugging, she then extended kindness to me and offered me a hug in return. She had obviously spotted that I was a little uncomfortable, so put her love in action. We could already see the ripples of our small random act of kindness growing, and that was so satisfactory.
Random Acts of Kindness day was started years ago, and participants are nicknamed ‘Raktivists’. It doesn’t need to be a grand gesture, It can be something small that nobody else would know about, paying for a strangers coffee for example. There are lots of ideas that wouldn’t even cost you anything, just think of letting someone out of a junction when you are driving… you get the idea. There are plenty of tips, if you need them, on their website of things you can do too. Or you don’t have to look very far for inspiration on YouTube to find random acts of kindness, my favourite video is this one, particularly the little boys face when the ride starts to move!
The whole point of it is to start a ripple. One small act generates another, and another, and another, spreading the kindness further and further. Just think of the lady offering me a hug; She would never have done that, had she not been hugged herself first. Perhaps she will then go home and tell her family what happened that normal Tuesday in a coffee shop in Richmond, who knows, they might go on to hug a stranger in need, and so it continues…
So have a think about what you could do to spread kindness. Start small if it’s too scary, but the important thing is to start. After all, Ghandi said… “In a gentle way, you can shake the world…”
So go on, make it shake…
Love Sophie xxx