Each year on February 17th, we celebrate random acts of kindness. Opportunities to provide gestures, big or small, that make us smile and create happiness are powerful. Sometimes it is the smallest act that unknowingly makes the biggest impact on another person.
Human intentions, in general, are honorable and random acts of kindness often go unnoticed because it is considered the normal thing to do. Some have a predisposition to perform acts that enlightens human life more than others. I know personally, my son has a soft spot for the elderly and will go out of his way to ensure they have the assistance they need at every opportunity. In another situation, I once saw a Marine sit on an airport bench next to an elderly lady who was waiting for her daughter; he didn’t want her to sit alone, so he waited along with her.
Altruistic acts of kindness can fulfill the basic human needs of others, strengthening our bond as humans. Research has shown that helping others gives a sense of purpose and satisfaction and is contagious! So, what are some suggestions for those of us not purposefully performing acts of kindness and improving our own sense of well-being and meaning? Be aware of your surroundings and those who are struggling in one way or another. Buy the person’s lunch in line behind you at the fast food restaurant. Let someone go in front of you in line at the supermarket. Compliment a stranger. Just be aware of opportunities in front of you daily. The possibilities are endless.
Some have a passion for kindness and act on it every day. How you perform random acts of kindness is up to you and can be a spur of the moment act or consciously performed on a routine basis. The gratification from the action of helping others can linger and allows one to feel meaningful in their daily life.