A simple act of kindness can take as little as a minute, yet impact another person’s life forever. I think nowadays, we make our life so hectic rushing from here to there; we forget to slow down to do the little things.
Holding the Door Open:
How many times have you gone to a store, one that does not have the automatic sliding doors and instead of the person in front of you holding the door open to let you in, they just walk in? The door shuts right in front of you. Or have you seen a mother struggling with a stroller and another youngster, trying to push open the door to let them out and people walk right past her, instead of holding the door open for her? This mainly happens at restaurants, where people are afraid if they keep the door open for you, you will check in before they do and get seated first. You were already going to be waiting for half an hour for a table, so what difference does waiting another five minutes going to make?
Sharing Your Umbrella:
Have you ever gone to the grocery store and you see it is going to rain, so you take your umbrella inside. When you come out, and it is raining, you open up your umbrella and rush to your car. Vaguely you remember seeing an elderly person also standing at the store’s exit, hesitating going out in the rain. Once you get in your car, you leave, forgetting all about the elderly person standing there. How much would it have taken you to walk back to this elderly person and cover them with your umbrella and walk them to their car? For them, it may not be just a case of getting wet, but fear of falling on the wet pavement. Your keeping them dry and helping them might have been the hi-lite of their day.
When is the last time you gave a person a compliment? Your co-worker got their hair cut. Do you know how much it would mean to the person, especially a female, if you politely say, “You haircut looks very nice.” Or if you know, a person is trying to lose weight, and it looks like they have lost a few pounds. Tell them they look great. This helps give them the incentive to keep going.
Check on Your Friends and Loved Ones:
If you know, someone is not feeling well or in the hospital, call them. Let them know you were thinking about them and hope they are feeling better. Or someone who has just come out of the hospital and they are not permitted to drive yet but need to go to their doctor appointments. Would you be able to volunteer to take them to their doctor appointments? Or maybe you could volunteer to go to the grocery store for them. You were already planning on going there, so it is not going to be out of your way. But it might make the difference if they have food in their refrigerator or not.
Invite People to Join You or a Group:
Do you know of someone who has lost a spouse or gone through a divorce? They have spent years as a couple and getting out and socializing as a single person, might be difficult for them. You might be a very social person who enjoys getting out and meeting other people. Invite this person to go with you or ask them to meet you at the outing. It doesn’t mean they are going to go, but they will know they have options to go someplace when they are ready to go out.
Visit With Your Parents:
If you are blessed to have one or both parents still alive, go visit them, or if they are not near, call and ask how they are doing. My Mom used to ask me to come over to have lunch with her and Dad every Sunday. Sadly, I have to admit there were times I did not want to have lunch with them because I had other things I wanted to do. Both my parents have been gone now for five years, and not a Sunday goes by that I don't wish I could have lunch with them again. What may take an hour of your day could be what they look forward to all week.
Kindness is the human element that lets us know we care about one another. It does not matter if it is a stranger you just met and you are opening the door for them, or a relative you love with your whole heart, and you spend time with them. Do an act of kindness. Not only does it make you a better person, but it also expands this world with love.
P.S. Today I went to the grocery store and as I was walking in a woman is pulling into a handicap parking spot. She rolls down her window as I walk past. She asks me if I would please ask the grocery store to bring out a motorized shopping cart to her. Instead of going into the store and asking someone else to bring out a motorized vehicle to her, I took one out to her. It only took five minutes of my time. Not only was she very grateful I had done this for her, but I felt useful in helping her. You never know, one day it might be you asking a stranger for help. As I walked away, I raised my eyes to heaven and said thank you for allowing me the opportunity to help someone.