Get ready for November 13th because it is world kindness day! That's right; you read that correctly: November 13th is world kindness day. You might be asking yourself what that means. First, ask yourself what you want it to mean. Go get your loved ones and your friends. Spread the word every chance you get, then make a plan.
How will you live out kindness to others on the thirteenth day of November this year? Start looking around now and formulate a plan. Imagine how much better the world would be if every person on the planet engaged in a random act of kindness every day. A lot would get done, and there would be a lot more positivity going around. For now, though, start with this one day and see where it takes you.
In today's world of forced isolation, it is easy to forget how to participate in random acts of kindness. Some might tell you that if they don't know someone, they aren't speaking to them. Some people might tell you that they are kind to everyone they know — they don't need a special day. Others might report that speaking to or approaching someone that they do not know is uncomfortable. Well, is there some good news for those people: there are ways to be kind to strangers from a distance and without them knowing.
For example, say you are sitting in the drive-thru line at a coffee shop. Why not pay for the order behind you? This simple act of kindness doesn't require you to talk to that person at all, and the kindness might be paid forward if that person pays for the person behind them, and so on. If you go out to eat, show your server some extra kindness. It doesn't have to be a large tip; it can be a simple compliment about how excellent their service was. If you are able, do give them a bit of an extra tip. You could also donate to a charity or cause that moves you.
There are other ways to be kind to others that do not involve any money at all. If you notice someone who has a grocery cart and they have just finished with it, take it back to the store for them. Maybe you are out shopping, and you notice someone is struggling to reach an item that you can easily reach, and you grab it for them. You do not have to make conversation or anything; the simple act of helping someone goes a long way. Don't expect a thank you. Be satisfied with the fact that you were able to help someone, and it did not cost you anything but a few seconds of your shopping trip.
If you go over to someone's home for dinner, offer to do the dishes afterward. When they protest, tell them it's only fair since they cooked the meal. If you have time, you can volunteer at a homeless shelter or local event. Just know there are other ways to be kind without spending money.
While you are being kind to others, don't forget that the most important person to be kind to is yourself. That's right, yourself. People often forget to be kind to themselves. Instead, they get lost in juggling work, kids, housework, appointments, and so many other things that they completely forget to be kind to themselves. Being kind to yourself may take some effort, but it is doable and worthwhile.
If you've had a long day at work and a ton of errands to run after, give yourself a loose timeline. Prioritize whatever you need to get done into two categories: what must be done today and what can wait until tomorrow. Don't stress about getting everything done, but be kind to yourself and allow yourself wiggle room. Then, reward yourself with dinner out or time to curl up with a good book or television show.
Setting goals for yourself is another way you can show yourself kindness. For every goal you reach, give yourself a small reward. Show yourself some grace if you do not hit every goal in the self-allotted time.
There are so many ways to show yourself kindness. Grab your favorite treat. Take a hot bath. Watch that movie you've wanted to see. We live in a busy world. While you are out there doing random acts of kindness for others, don't forget yourself!
We live in a world where so many things divide neighbors, families, and cultures. So much so that an entire day has been dedicated to reminding us to show each other kindness. Make the most of world kindness day to sprinkle random acts of kindness wherever you find yourself. These acts of kindness do not have to be big or extravagant. Saying good morning with a smile to someone you don't know has the potential to make their day. Buying a cup of coffee for someone in line behind you may touch someone on levels beyond your understanding. If you feel like your act of kindness for the day needs to be on a larger scale, volunteer at a homeless shelter or local event. If anxiety or depression is preventing you from showing kindness to others or yourself, SokyaHealth can help you get past those barriers. Call us at (866) 657-6592.