Because she brings joy to the lives of everyone she meets, here is a fabulous guest post from my dear friend, Heather of Then Heather Said.
Compassion, gentleness, and generosity are some of the best superpowers we have as human beings. Who needs X-ray vision or to be able to fly to save the world? We can do extraordinary things by carrying out small acts of kindness in our day to day lives.
The best part about kindness is that it doesn’t take anything spectacular to make it happen. With a few simple words, dollars, or minutes of your time you have the power to make someone’s day. Think about a time you were shown simple, genuine kindness. How did that make you feel? You can make others feel that exact same way.
During the Holiday Season, it’s easy to focus on the super long list of to-do’s we each face. In the past, I found that I was first to forget that the holidays are meant to be celebrated with love and compassion, not feared with hustle and bustle.
As the busy time starts to sneak up on me, I have made a commitment to revive my drive for kindness. Here is a list of ways you can work some extra holiday goodness into the month of December. Do you think you could commit to completing one of these keys to kindness each week until Christmas? What about ten? Does anyone dare make this their new and improved Holiday To-Do list?
25 Small Acts of Holiday Kindness
Kindness to Friends & Family
*Pay a trio of choir students $5-10 each to put on an impromptu concert by caroling at your loved ones home. Don’t know where to start? Contact the local high school choir teacher to see if he/she can recommend someone for you!
*When sending gifts to a close friend who lives far away, include something small for her significant other. A tin of cookies or an ornament showcasing a favorite hobby are small gifts that show you care.
Kindness to Your Community
*Buy a few $5 gift cards. Hand them out to the people you correspond with almost every day but don’t know their last names. The UPS guy, the morning cashier at the gas station, or the waiter you request every time you visit your favorite restaurant.
*Leave a packet of hot chocolate or an envelope of tea at the desk of a co-worker.
*Bring a poinsettia plant to the checkout desk at library or owners of the local coffee shop.
Kindness to Neighbors
* Spending time outside shoveling, or scrapping ice off the car? – why not do your neighbor’s, too?
*Adult Ding-Dong-Ditch! Leave a nice anonymous gift at your neighbor’s door, ring that bell, and bolt!
*Invite a neighbor over for a “get to know you better casual dinner” – serve something easy and let the highlight of the evening be conversation!
*Offer to take some photos of the family that lives next door. Ask if you can schedule 30 minutes getting different pictures of the family together, in front of the tree or out in the snow. Most families have a standard self-timer photo, but you can offer them so much more – even with your point n shoot!
Kindness to Blends
* Read a book you know a specific blend will like? Go beyond the standard “you must read this book” email and ship it to them.
* Forward on coupons you receive in your inbox to others who may appreciate them.
*Lurking on a blog you can’t get enough of, but haven’t made the jump to contact the brilliance behind it? Take the time to write an email to the blogger about what makes you coming back again and again. Thank them for sharing their life with you and wish them good tidings!
* Send Christmas E-cards to your internet savvy blends.
Kindness to Strangers
*Driving through for coffee? Purchase the person behind you in line’s beverage!
*Carry a box of candy canes in the car with you during your holiday road trips. Hand one over to toll booth operators as you pay the toll.
*Send one random Holiday Greeting this year. Use Google Maps to find a residential address in a town you’ve never visited and send a note wishing the household good fortune and cheer!
Kindness in Gratitude
*Send a Christmas card to an old high school teacher, coach, college professor, or other influence person from your past. Make sure to include a note tell them what an impact they had in your life.
*Be genuine. Make an effort to tell co-workers that offer you a helping hand how much you appreciate them. The words “I appreciate you” can be so powerful in a world where “thank you” is heard daily.
* Take a plate of treats to the town hall, fire station, or a government office in your town. These people are working hard for you all year long and could use a random act of pick-me-up kindness!
Kindness to the Earth
*Up-cycle newspaper to wrap your gifts this year. Spruce it up with some green or red paint, or add a bow.
*Every variety of sharing is GREEN – Share unexpected things with friends, family, co-workers, and neighbors – bread-makers, craft tools, snow-blowers…
*Keep gift bags you receive this holiday season to reuse in new ways – carrying your lunch in a sparkly bag with curly ribbon instantly makes mealtime more fun.
Kindness to Yourself
*Schedule a self-date. The week before Christmas, RSVP to yourself – take several hours off to do something YOU enjoy. No Christmas to-do tasks! Get a manicure, tuck yourself away in a bookshop corner, go play with puppies: DO IT FOR YOU.
*Reward your hard work. Enjoy the holiday flavored latte while you pushing that cart through Whole Foods for Christmas dinner. Buy yourself a new pair of earrings when you are finished with your Christmas shopping.
*Say “No.” You don’t need to travel to every family gathering. You don’t need to agree to bake cookies for every meeting. You don’t need to attend every meet-up. Don’t allow yourself to become overwhelmed, the world will not end if you say “No” but your Christmas cheer might if you say “Yes.”
May KINDNESS be yours this Holiday Season!
xo – Heather