I recently ended up on the ground as I was on my way to a medical appointment. My legs just gave out. Several kind people came to my aid and they even called an ambulance for me. It got me thinking about kindness. There are many ways to show kindness.
Be courteous. When you find yourself waiting in a line in a supermarket and there is someone behind you with just a few items you let them go ahead of you. It won’t take much of your time and could make someone’s day.
Be friendly. When I used to take bike rides thru the city, I would greet people I would see sitting on their porch. They would always say hello back. Say hello to strangers when you walk past them on the street.
Be charitable. I have walked into a local food bank with some cash and gave it to them. Donate anonymously. Just the act of giving is all the reward you should need. Most of us have clothing we have outgrown or don’t wear anymore. Donate used your clothing to charity. It feels good to know you are helping someone out even if you don’t know them. Also you can donate your used vehicle to a worthy cause.
Be thankful. I once saw three soldiers in desert camo going into a local sandwich shop. I circled the block and went in and paid for their meal. When I see a veteran with a ball cap indicating they had been in the service, I go out of my way to thank them. This also happens to me as well when I wear my Vietnam veterans’ hat. Make every day Veteran’s Day.
Be considerate. I worked at a super market in my youth and one of my jobs was to go on “cart patrol”. It was especially aggravating to have to get dressed in my winter coat, hat and boots to retrieve that one cart someone had left in the furthest corner of the parking lot. Return the cart to the store or the cart corral if they have one.
Be thoughtful. Speaking of shopping carts, I give my cart to someone at Aldi and when they offer me the quarter, I refuse and tell them to pass it on. Sometimes I just push it into the cart collection area and walk away, leaving the quarter in it. It’s just a quarter, it’s not going to bankrupt me.
Be loving. My wife likes flowers so I try to keep fresh cut flowers in the house every day of the year. Give flowers to someone for no particular reason at all.
Be kind. We all get frustrated in traffic at one time or another. However, simply because traffic is moving slowly doesn’t mean that we can’t let another driver into your lane. One additional car in front of you isn’t going to make you arrive any earlier or later.
Mow the lawn, rake the leaves or shovel the snow for a senior citizen and surprise them. When I was younger, I used to snow blow all the way around the block. I figured I was dressed and out in the cold anyway, why not help people out.
Be polite. The next time you hear someone sneeze, say “Bless you” whether you know them or not. People rarely do this anymore.
Be appreciative. At some point in time, we’ve all had to call a handyman to help us out. The next time someone is at your house fixing something, offer them a cold drink. Let them know you value the work they are doing for you. You might get a higher level of service in gratitude and maybe the bill will be a bit lower. I know, I used to run a handyman business myself.
Be nice. Hold the elevator for someone. The few seconds you wait for someone will not affect your day but it may improve theirs.
Be generous. I have taken extra coupons to a fast food restaurant and handed them to families with children or older couples. If you have extra coupons give them to other customers.
Stop at a kid’s lemonade stand and buy a drink. It’s usually only a quarter. You will make them smile.
Servers make their living on tips. Leave a big tip and the next time you go you might be treated like an old friend.
Be complimentary. Telling someone you like their work, their outfit or their haircut is the cheapest form of kindness there is. Acts of thoughtfulness generally cost you little and can make a person’s day better.
I recently was at a dance recital. At intermission, I went out to get something to drink. They were selling iced, bottled water for a dollar a bottle. Unfortunately, the cooler was on the floor. Being as I have a balance issue, I asked the person in front of me to get me a bottle of water. She handed me the one they had gotten for themselves and bent over to get one for herself. I slid my way around her and cut in front of her. When it came to pay I paid for both of our drinks. One good turn deserves another. Kindness starts with just one person holding open a door for another and that person passing it on.
Lead image: kakisky