Are you running around, just now realizing that you are nowhere on your holiday shopping list? Have you finalized the menu for what you’ll prepare or bring to your holiday celebrations? Did you make reservations at the restaurant you want to hit, or on the right train/bus/plane? Have you practiced the self-care you committed to, to get you through the next couple of weeks in one piece?
Am I stressing you out?
I hope so! Because (1) you already have the tools and resources to deal with stress head on – just practice those deep breathing techniques and/or put things in perspective and prioritize; and (2) although those tasks may seem overwhelming and like the end of your world, they’re not.
No, I’m not going to cite the ole “there are people starving in the world” scenario. But I am going to tell you that there are people who are struggling, likely right in your vicinity at this very moment.
Whether it hunger, depression, loneliness, illness, lack of sleep or a bevy of other things, an act of kindness could change their world in an instant.
So let’s do this! I suggest we proclaim today “Random (or not so random) Act of Kindness Day.” Heck, let’s make it the whole rest of the year!
Somehow things always get done, right? So as you are rushing around tackling your “to do” list, make it your mission to make someone smile. Better yet, make his/her day.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Awareness of those around you – just look up from what you’re doing and take notice – there are hundreds of opportunities right in front of you.
- To get out of your own head – as important as what you’re doing is, there’s nothing for the soul like taking a beat and fulfilling a need in someone else.
- Sharp radar skills – zoom in on how you can make a difference in that moment.
- Desire to make a move – once you pinpoint what you’re going to do, go for it!
Let me cite some simple examples that take little (if any) time:
- You’re sitting on the train/bus/plane and two people who clearly know each other get on. There is one available seat next to you and one of them sits down. Get up/move over and offer that seat so they can sit together!
- You’re walking down the street, having just gone to the market, and someone approaches and says he/she is hungry. Go into that bag and grab the brightest, juiciest piece of fruit and hand it over with a smile. When I first moved to NYC, I gave a tangerine to a woman who proceeded to kiss it with a glint in her eye. It made a huge impression on me.
- You’re about to go to the store. You’re neighbor is sick/elderly/has three kids at home. Call or knock on the door and see if you can pick something up for him/her while you’re out.
- You’re walking down the street/in the mall/the hallway at work and meet someone’s eye and smile or give a compliment. 99% of the time the recipient will smile back and you’ll have impacted his/her mood.
- You’re at your desk and get up to do some deep breathing, stretches or get some water. Ask your colleague if you could get some for him/her too. It will make for a nice (and probably much needed) break and he/she will likely return the favor when you need it most.
- If you have the means, buy the person in line behind you his/her cup of Joe, toll fee or drop off some presents/coats/food at the local community center. One of my favorite nonprofits is Donors Choose where you can support a classroom project implemented by the teacher.
- Write a hand written note to someone you haven’t spoken with in awhile. In fact, in the very coffee shop I write this blog sits this station encouraging it. Everyone loves to get mail that doesn’t consist of bills and marketing offers!
You get the idea, so now go out there and spread some cheer. There’s nothing like it for the soul, especially as we wind down the year.
Remember safety first, and please do share your acts and the results.
Warmest wishes for a wonderful week!
With kindest regards,
Marjorie, Chief MOJO Maker™
P.S. Looking for a gift to help fulfill you or your loved ones 2016 resolutions? Contact me about the upcoming 2016 Virtual Well-Being Reset Program. firstname.lastname@example.org