This week is a special week, and tomorrow is a special day. This is “random acts of kindness” week, and tomorrow is “random acts of kindness” day. It is fitting we ended last week discussing how to love others and ourselves. These few days are dedicated to people who embody the essence of kindness, all year round. If you recall…
Kindness is a behavior marked by ethical characteristics, an awareness of the impact of your actions, and a desire to better yourself and others.
While good people act as they do for many reasons…because of their passion for a cause, how it makes them feel, their spiritual beliefs, or to pay it forward…they all strive to make the world a better place. When I was younger, I learned sage advice from a friend. I came to him perplexed about my life’s journey…feeling my ability as an engineer could have been better used in aerospace or energy development…that is, to help take mankind get to the stars, or to help discover a renewable energy source. I felt this would bring my life purpose. His response was elegant, and has stayed with me since…
“The greatest contribution we as individuals can offer is the betterment of society. It does not take a revolution to do so, simply a conscious act of will, every day.”
And that is what these organizations, I am about to share, are doing. I ask you, on the eve of “random acts of kindness” day, to be mindful of your behavior tomorrow, as you should on all days. And if you do not join the campaign, at least share your stories, just as I have, or the stories you have seen. Most of these organizations web sites have storyboards to post your experiences. You have no idea how sharing your kindness can impact another person to do the same…and so on, and so on, and so on.
The World Kindness Movement. An international group will members in over 25 nations with a simple goal…bring together “like-minded kindness organizations from around the world.” Originating in Japan, the group has steadily grown “to inspire individuals towards greater kindness and to connect nations to create a kinder world.”
Random Acts of Kindness Foundation. A foundation focused both practicing and teaching kindness in schools, homes and communities. Their online site is a media center of lesson plans, and network to connect with people to go out and “do good.” There is also an active blogging community to share your stories.
Spread Kindness. An aspirational organization designed on the principle that kindness is contagious. Free media available with affirming quotes and “pay it forward” kindness cards as a conscious reminder we are all capable of being kind.
Kindness Revolution. Based on a corporate development book to inspire world-class customer service. Their fundamental principle is simple, if your customer care representatives are kind, customers will be treated better, which will have profound results for your company.
Random Acts. An international organization based mostly in North America, parts of Europe and Australia with an ambition to “conquer the world, one random act of kindness at a time.” They have ongoing events, fundraisers, and programs encouraging people to donate and participate to “breed kindness.”
Newtown Kindness. An organization to “promote kindness as a guiding principle of humanity.” They are “committed to fostering compassion in children and inspiring life-long contributors to society.” They distribute programs and media selections to teach and promote acts of kindness. The foundation was established in Charlotte Bacon’s honor, a child who was lost during the Shady Hook Tragedy in 2012.
Kindness Foundation. A foundation that aims to “inspire, education and connect” all people with kindness because “everyone deserves kindness; it is essential for us to thrive.” They offer media and value-based kindness education for school and work scenarios.
ARK Project Now. An engaging, online web journal of a group of young men traveling the United States to commit random acts of kindness in a “pay it forward” fashion. Their ventures are recorded via a blog, with insightful and inspiring media clips. It inspires a kindness epidemic, and a transformation within all of us.
Invisible Thread. A book that is an “inspiring true story of Laura and Maurice and how small acts of kindness can change lives.” It is based on a proverb that an “invisible thread connects those who are destined to meet.” Their online site connects people with helpful organizations for the underprivileged, and offers a medium to promote kindness.
These nine groups are only a few that are available, whose scale is larger than most. Do not limit yourself to only these should you decide to explore “organized kindness.” There are many ways to behave kindly, and I encourage you to walk your own path.