I recently read a Facebook post by one of my cousins discussing their family advent calendar. They decided that this year, instead of filling it with candy and treats, they were going to fill it with “daily acts of kindness” that they would perform in and around their town. Her four kids were totally on board, and they even participated in the brainstorming.
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I loved this idea so much, I decided to do one of my own (even though we don’t even have an advent calendar).
So, I created this list of things my family and I can do to bring a little joy, kindness, and happiness to those around us this holiday season. I also created a 25 days of kindness pdf of this list with little tags to cut out and use for your own advent calendar.
If you don’t have one, maybe you could drop them in a hat and draw one each day? I left plenty of blank ones so you could add your own ideas to the list.
Now for those 25 acts of kindness:
- Leave an awesome tip for your server next time you go out to eat
- Call your grandmother(s)
- Thank the crew at work (doorman, security guard, parking lot attendant, janitorial staff. All those people we tend to forget about that are busy working hard all around us)
- Rake the leaves from your neighbor’s sidewalk (or shovel the snow if you live a little more north)
- Bring in treats or cookies for your coworkers
- Leave a thank you card for your mail carrier (even if she is a bit grumpy and yells at you)
- Help a foster kid get something they really want or need
- Send Christmas cards to a nursing home, some people don’t get any…
- Pay for the person’s coffee behind you in line (I will likely do it in a drive-thru so it isn’t all awkward and stuff)
- Help someone carry their bags to the car or return the cart for someone
- Purchase a toy for Toys for Tots
- Tell a manager about the fantastic service you received or write a positive yelp review
- Make a payment on someone’s layaway
- Leave a scarf and gloves at the bus stop
- Have a conversation with an elderly person that you don’t already know (elderly people have a high rate of depression and are often very lonely)
- Drop off some cookies or treats at a Hospitality House, Ronald McDonald House, or a Woman’s shelter
- Compliment 5 people today, AND MEAN IT!
- Send a postcard to a sick kid
- Let that obviously frazzled parent cut in front of you in the checkout line
- Go out and feed the homeless or volunteer at a soup kitchen
- Drop off some pet food at a local animal shelter
- Be patient while standing in those shopping lines, and remember to thank the cashier and tell them “They are doing a great job”
- Leave a few $5 bills in random library books with a note that says “have a nice day”
- Bring some coffee or cider to the ER staff or Fire Department on Christmas Eve
- Be present with your family today. Unplug and appreciate the moment.
I think the world could stand a little more kindness, especially with all of the hate swirling around right now.
If all of us just make tiny little efforts every day, think how much better it could be in a week…a month…a year.
Do you have a few ideas of things I should add to my list? What is your favorite way to pay it forward and add a little more kindness to the world?