Kindness, a trait people never fail to underestimate – Albus Dumbledore (Harry Potter)
Kindness is one of the most overlooked virtues in our times. Sadly, people often mistake kindness for weakness, or they simply do not consider it is a personality trait worth considering. However, one act of kindness can change the life of someone.
Kindness is being generous not only to humanity but to other living creatures too. Your kind gesture reflects what you are from inside. Do you know that your small acts of kindness can bring a lot of difference in someone’s life?
There are plenty of ways to bring a positive change in someone’s life. Kindness is all about a helping gesture. It does not only mean that you help someone financially; it could be anything from a smile to a kind word.
Whether you donate to the orphanage or help out a senior citizen dragging their shopping cart along the grocery lanes, and whether you put our bird feeders or arrange a home for a kitten, it all counts as acts of kindness.
Below are the seven acts of kindness that changed the course of my life.
Let’s read them one by one:
I believe that time is precious for everyone, but you can volunteer your spare time to help others. For instance, you can volunteer at the local homeless shelter, pet shelter, or hospital to bring about some good in other people’s lives.
For instance, when I was living in London, I volunteered at Carpet Cleaning London, a company that provided free carpet cleaning services to the local veteran centers. Volunteering here shaped me as a human; it expanded my sense of empathy as I connected with many veterans who gave their lives and happiness for their country.
The experiences and stories of these soldiers gave me a profound respect for life and humanity, which I would not have found otherwise.
- Hold a Door for Some One
Holding an open the door for someone is a simple act of kindness. People usually ignore it when rushing in or out. It is important to pay attention to those around us, especially children, elderly people, or pregnant ladies.
Trust me; this little act of kindness goes a long way. I experienced this example during the recent pandemic. I was traveling to my hometown, and the airport was almost deserted as there were few flights. I was standing in the ticket line when I saw an overwhelmed mom of two in the aisle across from me.
She was visibly pregnant, and she had two kids with her; a toddler and a baby. She had a carrycot and a baby bad as well. She was struggling to manage everything and pass through the lounge gate as well. The security guard was looking at her disapprovingly as she struggled.
Just then, a lady appeared; she spoke to the mom and took her baby bag, and held the door open while the pregnant mom crossed the door with her babies. The look of gratitude on the mom’s face is something I’ll never forget, and since then, I have made it a habit to pause and hold the door open for someone who might be struggling in my vicinity.
You can’t imagine how many smiles I get in return! It’s joyous.
- Be Generous with Your Compliments
It was my first interview for my first job ever, and I was decidedly nervous. I was panicking inside as I imagined all the things that could go wrong, and my confidence was crumbling around me. When they called me inside, the interviewer smiled at me and complimented me on my portfolio. She said my descriptions are among the most powerful ones she had ever read.
This simple compliment and smile bolstered my courage and dissipated my fears. It led me to give a smashing interview and secure the job as well. The first job is the first step in your life, which leads to the evolution of your career, and that one act of kindness ensured that my first step was a good one.
The takeaway? Give compliments to others to boost their confidence level and tell them that they are doing a great job. You will notice how it not only makes others feel great but also you will be happy.
- Help Your Community
My grandmother was diagnosed with double pneumonia one winter. Her lungs shriveled, and the doctor told us that she would have to be on oxygen for the rest of her life. We did not have enough money to buy an oxygen concentrator, and needless to say, the whole family was worried.
One day, my sister got a call from a neighbor, who explained that the concentrator has been arranged. He had heard that we needed one, and he knew a person who worked for an NGO. He made some calls to get us on the list. In the end, we got the concentrator free of cost, just because of our neighbor’s act of kindness.
Since then, I have always kept abreast of happenings in my community to help out when needed. You can start doing it too, let me tell you, it is very fulfilling!
- Offer a Free Coffee to the Guards
Have you ever imagined how tough it is for a security guard to stand whole day long outside in the winters? Be kind to them! You can ask them for a cup of tea or coffee in the cold weather. I usually buy a few cups of coffee/tea for any security guards or construction workers who are working out in extremely harsh weather.
Coffee gift cards are another option you can hand out to police or traffic officers, mail carriers, and firefighters in your community. This act of kindness is easy and can probably give people an extra boost for the rest of the day.
- Gift Preloved Items
When my sister was about to have her baby, I joined many local mom groups to learn stuff and help when needed. I noticed that many moms were giving away preloved baby items with captions like,
“My toddler has outgrown this baby chair. Anyone with a kid between 2 -3 years old will find this useful; I am giving this chair away for free only on the condition that you pass it on when your child has outgrown it.”
This was amazing to me; people were giving away stuff for free out of kindness. Many deserving people around you cannot afford to buy essential clothes and accessories for their kids. This way, they could get them without worrying about money.
This simple act of kindness made me more considerate of others and reminded me that while we celebrate our own happiness, we should do what we can to contribute to the happiness of others in our communities.
- Give Respect
The final act of kindness taught me to treat people providing services around us with respect. We give a big tip to the hotel/restaurant waiters. We all dine out, and giving tips to the waiter or waitress is normal practice, but sometimes giving respect is more important than giving money. Treat your servers, house help, CSR, and other service people with respect and see how much of a difference you make.
God asks His people to be kind to everyone: including humans and other living things. I believe in helping others for eternal satisfaction. Have you have had similar experiences in life? Do share with us!
Shaheryar provides ghostwriting and copywriting services. His educational background in the technical field and business studies helps him in tackling topics ranging from career and business productivity to web development and digital marketing.