Thursday, October 22, 2015

Day 13: Stop the Random Acts of Kindness. Be Intentional.

be kind on purpose copy

This week I was a chaperone on my daughter’s pumpkin patch field trip. While we were there, I took a few photos of the kids in my group to pass on to their moms. The teachers were taking pictures of each of the kids with their pumpkins, but I wanted to grab a few snaps of the kids in action to text to the moms that day.

How thoughtful of me, you say. Why, yes. But only because last year when I was at work another mom had texted me a picture of my son reaching out timidly but excitedly to touch a snake the pet wrangler had brought to his class. I remembered how much it had meant to me to feel like I had “been there” and I wanted to be able to do that for another mom too. After all, who doesn’t love a good kid-in-the-corn-pit picture?

By the same token, while we were picking out our pumpkins one of the other moms came up to me and offered to take my picture with my daughter. If you’re at all like me, you’re rarely in the shot so I was especially pleased by her offer. When I thanked her, she told me that someone had just done the same for her and her girls, so she was just passing it on.

These were such small kindnesses but they had big impact. 

Here are three intentional acts of kindness you can gift someone with today:

1. Remember which small gestures have been especially meaningful to you. Then repeat them for someone else.

2. Offer to take a picture of a mom with her kids. If you’re sitting on the bleachers watching a soccer game or if you all are at Tae Kwon Do class, odds are that there is a mom snapping pictures on her phone.  Help her get in the shot. (This post by AshleyAnn is especially poignant about moms needing to be in the picture.)

3. Compliment someone. I bought Tieks earlier this year. They’re super comfortable (although, sadly, they haven’t held up as well as I had hoped. Perhaps it was the light camel color?) But one of the unexpected things about wearing them is that they are natural conversation starters. People ask me how I like them or they tell me that they have a pair. It’s kind of like a club. I’ll see Tieks on someone and I’ll give a little Tiek shout-out. It’s a fun little boost to the day.

Go forth and be kind. On purpose.

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