“Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.”- Mark Twain

Simple acts of kindness can make a difference in everyone’s life. Just take a minute to think about the last time a stranger opened a door for you, or the neighbour who greets you every morning with a big smile. How did it make you feel? Kindness is commonly perceived as going out of your way to do something very special for someone or buying an expensive gift for a loved one. While these acts have their place in our lives; there are simple acts of kindness that won’t cost you a penny, yet are equally impactful, if not more so. And the good news is that genuine kindness is contagious. These are important lessons for life that can make a real difference to both the donor and receiver of acts of kindness.

Powerful Acts of Kindness that Won’t Cost Anything
  1. Smile more often

It is quite remarkable how something so easy can be so affecting. Putting on a smile sends positive signals; it makes you feel happier, it says that you a welcoming and approachable person, it says, “I might be going through tough times, but I still have reasons to smile”- it is a message of hope. A simple smile can literally change someone’s day. Have you ever noticed the positive feeling you get when someone smiles at you for no apparent reason, and the fact that their smile makes you feel like mimicking the favour? Or how a message accompanied by a smiley face emoji has a more positive vibe? Try to practice these simple lessons for life and watch the positive effects.

  1. Be present for someone

Being truly present for someone is a powerful act of kindness especially in this modern era, where everyone’s attention is preoccupied by work, their smartphone, or other gadgets. You can be present for someone in various ways; for example, putting away your phone when having a conversation with someone and practicing emphatic listening. Being actively present will help you acknowledge people’s emotions even before they speak. In many cases, people just need a keen ear or someone to hold their hand.

  1. Give genuine compliments

Giving genuine compliments to other people is a formidable act of kindness because it is a great way to share your positivity. Most people love being on the receiving end of a good compliment, and so this will help make them feel great and you will also be a more enjoyable person to be around. It can be as simple as saying a friend’s outfit looks good or appreciating your colleague’s work. However, you should make sure that your compliment is “genuine”. Don’t simply say nice things to people because you need a favour from them or want them to return the favour.

  1. Help a charity

Although a lot of charity organizations rely heavily on financial support, you don’t need to be a millionaire to help the people who are disadvantaged. Charities also need people to give their time and skills, and those things are equally important. You can find a cause that is important to you, such as working several hours per week in the kitchen at an orphanage, or donating your medical or bookkeeping expertise to a Health Care Centre for the homeless.
“Do your little bit of good where you are. It’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.” – Desmond Tutu.

  1. Pay it Forward

The word “pay” signifies a cost. For example, you are in the McDonald’s drive-thru line and when you pull up to the window, you find out that the person in the car ahead of you payed for your order. You can immediately pay it forward, by paying for the food order for the car behind you. But, paying it forward doesn’t have to cost anything – when someone smiles at you, smile at the next person you see; when someone stops and gives you directions, don’t hesitate to lend an ear to a stranger who looks in need; when someone compliments you, compliment the next person you see in a wheelchair; and the next time a co-workers brings you lunch without being prompted, the next time you drive by a donation bin, drop off unwanted or gently-used clothes that are just gathering dust in your closet.

Practice these valuable lessons for life regularly! It might be easier to show kindness when things are going well. But, behaving kindly even when you are facing difficult challenges will raise your self-confidence to a point where it becomes easier for you to overcome those challenges. Remember that kindness is contagious, therefore, practicing it creates a ripple effect that causes it to spread to others.

Categories: Life Lessons

30 Comments

Amara Kone · March 19, 2020 at 12:15 am

I don’t think anyone would disagree with your arguments. In fact, the term “pay it forward” has now become part of our vernacular. The sad reality is that some people are just mean, or think being kind is a sign of weakness.

    duppydomTEAM · March 19, 2020 at 8:36 pm

    Amara – thank you very much for your comments. It definitely is a sad reality that a lot of humans are not nice people. And these days in particular, many would rather videotape someone in desperate need (for social media posting), rather than lend a helping hand 👫 The good news is that at our core, the majority of humanity is “nice and kind”, and in the end, kindness will always triumph over social media.

      Amie Warwick · March 20, 2020 at 2:52 am

      Good comments!!

      Adaego M. Azi · March 21, 2020 at 7:46 pm

      🤗

      Amara Kone · March 24, 2020 at 3:24 am

      Thank you. Your comments are true.

Lisa Steffler · March 19, 2020 at 2:59 am

duppydomTEAM – this is a beautifully written article. This is a message me and my fellow churchgoers have been trying to get across for years. When trying to get people onboard with helping the less fortunate, they always think we want them to go deep into their pockets. I loved what you said about dropping off unused or unwanted clothing to a charity bin (or at a local church). Yes, kindness is contagious, and we should all pay kindness forward. Thank you for writing this article.

    duppydomTEAM · March 19, 2020 at 8:34 pm

    Thank you, Lisa. The bottom line is that there is so much all of us can do to help people in need, that cost very little or nothing at all. I would assume the most difficult issue Charity Organizations face is trying to convince the world of that fact 📣. Luckily, because kindness is contagious, we often want to help when we see someone else helping – maybe there is a reason why this mimicking behavior is part of our DNA.

      Adaego M. Azi · March 21, 2020 at 7:47 pm

      🤗

Adaego M. Azi · March 19, 2020 at 6:35 pm

duppydomTEAM— loved the article. I mentioned this before, I watch the Ellen Degeneres Show 💖and at the end of the show, she always says, “be kind to one another” – I think Ellen is a good example of how all of us should be. What I like the most about the Ellen show is that she always has everyday people on the show who do kind things for people they don’t even know. I also think that people who do kind things should be celebrated. I also read the article about why kindness is contagious – I had never heard about moral elevation before – what a cool thing. Thank you, duppydomTEAM.

    duppydomTEAM · March 19, 2020 at 8:34 pm

    Thank you for your thoughts, Adaego. People who engage in acts of kindness should be celebrated. Additionally, people like Ellen Degeneres who are good models for kindness should be celebrated – they show the rest of us what kindness looks like and motivate us to engage. “Moral Elevation” is very cool. Now people can put a name to the “warm-and-fuzzy-on-the-inside sensation” 😳 we get when we witness someone engaging in an act of kindness.

      Adaego M. Azi · March 21, 2020 at 7:48 pm

      🤗

    Amie Warwick · March 20, 2020 at 2:53 am

    Love Ellen. I watch it every day.

    S. Jakes · March 21, 2020 at 6:12 am

    👏

S. Jakes · March 19, 2020 at 10:28 pm

duppydomTEAM—I enjoyed reading this article. I really liked the free acts of kindness you mentioned in the article – all of them are things we can do on a regular basis. I always find it interesting how people you don’t know act when you smile at them. At first, they kind of look at you, like, why are you smiling at me? – and then they smile back. It just goes to show that people are not accustomed to people smiling at them, even though it’s an act of kindness and it costs nothing to smile at someone. Thank you duppydom – good article 👏

    duppydomTEAM · March 20, 2020 at 8:36 pm

    S. Jakes – your comments are very much appreciated. People from some countries/cultures are very friendly, kind and helpful, particularly when they spot foreigners (e.g., Portugal, Taiwan, Mexico and Canada). So, how surprised you are when an act of kindness is directed toward you really depends on what you are accustomed to. And of course, regardless of where you are from, altruism still exists in some form or another 👫💖🤗💑☀🌞🎈

      S. Jakes · March 21, 2020 at 6:10 am

      👏👏

      Adaego M. Azi · March 21, 2020 at 7:49 pm

      🤗

    Adaego M. Azi · March 21, 2020 at 7:50 pm

    🤗

Amie Warwick · March 20, 2020 at 3:01 am

Thanks duppydom, this is a nice article – and I love the picture of the fingers touching the glowing heart. I think being kind is a good life lesson. Can you image how amazing the world would be if a lot more people were kind? There would be less hate, racism, prejudice, crime, etc. This is the kind of world I would want to raise children in. I also love the idea that kindness is contagious.

    duppydomTEAM · March 20, 2020 at 8:34 pm

    Amie – you have “hit the nail on the head”! Your comments center on the logic of the article. “Be Kind: Wisdom of the Gods” – this is what humanity should be all about. Family helping family, neighbor helping neighbor, stranger helping stranger and living being helping living being. This should be humanity’s mantra. The COVID-19 pandemic the world is reeling from right now solidifies the proverb, “no man is an island.” 👬👭👭👫

      Adaego M. Azi · March 21, 2020 at 7:52 pm

      🤗❤

      Amie Warwick · March 25, 2020 at 5:16 am

      Thank you and I agree with you.

    S. Jakes · March 21, 2020 at 6:17 am

    Amie, that is an awesome picture 😍

Bruce Peters · March 20, 2020 at 4:06 am

To start off, I also read the article about being present for the ones we love and for our own life. It got me thinking that if we are constantly being distracted with our own stuff, it’s harder to be concerned about other people—or being kind to other people. We only really start thinking about kindness (beyond our own circumstances) as we get older, so the title of the article makes sense —…wisdom… over time we learn what kindness really means.

    duppydomTEAM · March 20, 2020 at 8:33 pm

    Bruce, thank you for your insights. We agree, with wisdom comes a better understanding of the world, human nature, and how our actions impact those around us. Unfortunately, age does not always equal wisdom, and therefore adults of all ages behave selfishly or in ways that are detrimental to others. One promising note – today’s children are much more humanistic and informed; and are thinking locally and globally and showing kindness to people a world apart 🌎💖🌏

      Adaego M. Azi · March 21, 2020 at 7:53 pm

      🤗❤

Nadine Wu · March 20, 2020 at 7:14 am

“Do your little bit of good where you are. It’s those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.” – Desmond Tutu’s quote is key to kindness and charity. We don’t have to engage in great gestures of kindness to make a difference in the world – every little bit helps. Whenever I talk to some people I know about charity, they always say, “so, who is going to help me, maybe I need some charity” (even though I know they don’t). My point is, this is some people’s response to helping people who live on the street. Even these people (with their ready-made rebuttals) might help if they thought they only had to help a little.

    duppydomTEAM · March 20, 2020 at 8:33 pm

    Nadine – thank you. Very insightful comments. Grand gestures can be good, and it seems like we always want to make grand gestures 🚀. Perhaps we feel that this is the best way to impress people. And of course, we can only make grand gestures if we have the resources to do so. Not only are small gestures 🧨 just as impressive, but we soon realize that a lot of small gestures (e.g., one act of kindness) can help move the world. This is the point Desmond Tutu was making, and the point we should be disseminating globally.

      Adaego M. Azi · March 21, 2020 at 7:56 pm

      ❤❤❤

    Adaego M. Azi · March 21, 2020 at 7:55 pm

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