Christine Carter, Author, Raising Happiness: 10 Simple Steps for More Joyful Kids and Happier Parents shares 3 simple ways to be kind.
Find Small Ways To Connect
Discussing simple ways to be kind, Carter and her daughters came up with some ideas. They decided that every time they walk into an elevator, they would make eye contact with one person, possibly offer a smile and maybe even a few words.
“It’s about making an effort to connect,” Carter says. “Once we had the sense of what kinds of things we can do, we really broadened our ‘giving’ vocabulary. My daughters and I share this sense that every day and in every situation, there are lots of ways to reach out beyond ourselves and do something— however tiny—that is kind.”
Make One Big Gesture
Along with the small things, Carter’s family also believes in some bigger gestures. Every few months, they make care packages for the homeless. They fill bags with things like water bottles, socks, lip balm – things her daughters think will help the homeless.
Carter said her “moody 13-year-old” also writes notes that are so sweet they make a mother cry. “Just things like, ‘We see you and we care.’ A lot of times they’ll give that, or just a dollar or a friendly hello but the rule is, you don’t just walk by.”
Acknowledge Those Around You
“Our rule is to interact with anyone who’s helping us,” Carter says. “Not long after we agreed on this, while I was going through a grocery store checkout, I got a phone call from a doctor I’d been waiting to hear from. I took the call. Afterwards, I told the checkout person and the bag packer I was sorry. ‘I had to take that call but I know it was rude.’ Both of them were visibly moved. They said, ‘Nobody ever says sorry for that. You’re right; it’s rude. It’s like we’re invisible.’ They were touched by the apology and the acknowledgement. After all, it doesn’t feel good to be ignored, particularly while you’re helping somebody.”
I would urge you to watch Chris Rosati, father, husband, friend and founder of Inspire Media who was diagnosed with ALS in 2010. Chris slowly lost his ability to walk and speak. He is devoting the rest of his life to spreading kindness.
Kindness is simple. Give it a try today.
Check out the Random Acts of Kindness website for more ideas to be kind.