A warm hug when we’re feeling down, a helpful hand when our arms are full, or a simple word of encouragement—sometimes the best things in life are the little things. And the most memorable are the small acts of kindness someone else shows to us with no expectation of anything in return. These unexpected gestures can be like a flood of sunshine, brightening up everything around us.
Random Acts of Kindness Day is February 17, and it’s the perfect opportunity to be a light for someone else. Because all of us could use a little extra kindness headed our way. Here are some ideas on how to celebrate:
Give a stranger a genuine compliment.
Next time you see someone wearing a piece of clothing you love, or a radiant smile, let them know you noticed. It can be a bit intimidating to speak up around people we don’t know, but they’ll likely receive your admiration with a whole lot of gladness and gratitude.
Leave kind notes in public places.
Try leaving a sticky note with a kind message inside the door of a bathroom stall, or on a dressing room mirror while you’re out and about. Whoever finds it is sure to pause and smile amidst a busy day. Our ThoughtFulls are also a great way to place a hidden word of encouragement just about anywhere.
Whip up something delicious for neighbors or friends.
Try out a recipe you’ve been wanting to make—or break out that tried-and-true dish you’ve already mastered. You can bake a batch of cookies for a neighbor, or even cook a nice dinner for a family member who’s experiencing some stress. You’ll fill their belly and their heart! Deliver with a handwritten card for an added dash of happiness.
Call a loved one to say you’re thinking of them.
Parents, grandparents, siblings, a friend who moved away on a new adventure—whoever and wherever we are, it is always an honor to be thought of. Call up someone near or far, just to say, “I’m thinking of you.” There’s nothing like a good conversation to lift up your spirits. And sometimes, just offering an open ear to hear about someone else’s life is a gift all on its own.
Make a care package.
Get crafty with some handmade gifts, or pick out a few heartfelt items to put into a care package. You can send it in the mail to a loved one, bring it by the desk of a favorite teacher or coworker, or even drop it off at a stranger’s door. The possibilities are endless.
Say thank you.
A simple thank you can go a long way. Who in your life would you like to thank? Say it with a note card, a sweet friendship book, or simply speak your own words from the heart. Appreciation doesn’t have to be elaborate—all that matters is that it comes from you.
Whether you choose to do something thoughtful for a stranger or a loved one, everyone will appreciate the touch of kindness that only you can bring to the world. And who knows, maybe your “random” acts won’t be so random after all… The kindness you share could be exactly the expression of care that someone has been waiting for.