No doubt you've heard of doing random acts of kindness, and you've probably seen the movie with that title. But have you ever actually done any such acts? Strangely enough, people are perhaps reluctant to do something nice, as they fear they might seem strange - which is a sad reflection on society. So here are some reasons why a random act of kindness is a wonderful thing to do …
1. Make Someone's Day
Being on the receiving end of a random act of kindness would in many cases make someone's day. Since people aren't used to strangers doing something nice for them, it would be a lovely surprise if that happened. Even the smallest gesture can really cheer someone up, especially if they've not had a good day.
2. Pay It Forward
One particularly lovely thing about random acts of kindness is that it starts a chain of kindnesses. Who knows how long that chain will stretch? When people receive an act of kindness it often prompts them to do the same for someone else. So paying for the coffee of the next person in line could lead to them helping someone else with their shopping, who then offers a parking space to another person, and on it goes …
3. Feels Good
You shouldn't do random acts of kindness in the hope of getting any kind of reward. But doing such little kindnesses really does feel good, and that on its own makes them worthwhile. You may not realise just how good it feels. So why not try it today - as well as cheering someone else's day, you'll brighten your own day as well!
4. Calm a Situation
People can get ridiculously cross at minor things like a slow-moving queue or the store running out of something they want. If you see this happen, this could be the time to step in and offer a random act of kindness. It could defuse their irritation and make the situation much more pleasant for anyone present.
5. Giving without Expectation
Random acts of kindness should be done without any expectation of receiving anything in return. You can even do kindnesses for people that you haven't met. Some people do things like leave change by parking meters for anyone who needs it, or flowers with a note inviting people to take one. We can be very self-centered, so it's good to do something with absolutely no benefit to ourselves (other than feeling good).
6. Benefits the World
With so many awful things happening in the world, it's more important than ever for us to be kind to our fellow human beings. So any attempt to make the world just that little bit better will help. Don't think it won't be noticed - even if your kindness only affects one person it will have done so in a positive way. And the ripple effect as it spreads outwards could in time have a major effect.
7. Just Because
Finally, do random acts of kindness 'just because'. It doesn't have to be for any reason at all. Just do something and let it happen. You may never know what effect it has, but the important thing is that you just wanted to do something nice.
What's the kindest thing a stranger has ever done for you?