Ryan Garcia, a 30-year-old Chicago man, pledged to make an act of kindness every day in 2012. Since 2012 is a leap year, that adds up to 366 acts of kindness in all. He says he was inspired to do something meaningful after the birth of his first child. So far he’s given out free hugs, taped money to parking meters, given care packages to homeless people, written a letter to a soldier killed in action, and more. Check out this YouTube video of a TV interview he did recently.
The Random Acts of Kindness foundation works to inspire people to practice kindness and pass it on to others. The RAK website is filled with great ideas on how to spread kindness, even in the workplace. Ideas include donating a portion of your revenue for a day to a group in need, organizing a blood drive, or collecting items for a local food bank. Full list of kindness activity ideas for the workplace
If you know someone who’s having a tough time and could use a break, offer to take him or her to lunch. Ask, “How are you doing?” and let your friend talk about whatever is bothering him or her. You may be able to offer a solution to the problem, but simply listening may be all your friend needs.
Do you know someone who could use a free lunch and a kind ear?
An anonymous good deed can inspire others, and cause a ripple effect of kindness. A good deed can be as simple as buying coffee for a coworker or leaving an interesting book on the bus or train for someone else to discover. Something I like, to help make the long Wisconsin winters a little more bearable for another, is to choose a random car in the parking lot after work or at the store, and clear the ice and snow off the windshield. It’s easy to do, and might really make someone’s day.