By Peter Comrie
One concept that continues to be popular into 2020 is ‘challenges’. For many of us, the willingness to participate in one of these social media challenges (or at least support it) started with the Ice Bucket Challenge to raise money for ALS research.
The Ice Bucket Challenge began with small roots (like so many big things) in 2014. People agreed to have a bucket of ice water dumped on their head (captured on video, of course) and then asked for donations, and challenged someone else to do it. In all, over $220 million was raised around the world for ALS research!
There have been all sorts of challenges since. Many of them just silly things to do to get a few likes on a post, and maybe collect another follower or two.
But I came across a study about kindness that got me thinking about challenges in a different way. And then I discovered that I’m not the first person to have the great idea of running a kindness challenge! That’s OK, and I think we should still do it!
Here’s the gist of the challenge: over the next 10 days, do at least one act of kindness every day. It doesn’t have to be large—in fact, studies show that doing just one small act of kindness a day improves our experience of happiness, besides all the goodness it spreads.
It’s the type of challenge that’s perfect for any Christmas season, but 2020 in particular demands every piece of goodness we can muster. People in our communities are suffering so much more this year than in the past. Economic hardships, health issues, fear, mental health crises, and bad news everywhere could be the start of the worst holiday season ever.
Not if I can help it, and I hope you will join me.
Let’s find all the possible small kindnesses we can show, and let’s all do at least one act of kindness every day for at least 10 days.
Will you join me?
Here are just a few ideas to get you started:
- This one’s a classic: pay for the order behind you in the drive-through.
- Mail a Christmas card with a hand-written note to someone who can’t be with loved ones this Christmas.
- Buy a festive yard decoration and offer to install it in a stranger’s yard.
- Have a little gift waiting for your delivery driver or mailman.
- Let someone go in front of you in a shopping line.
- Give a donation to a family in need, or even adopt the family and make their Christmas magical.
- Shovel your neighbour’s walkway after the next snowfall.
- Give someone a sincere compliment.
- Send a Christmas bouquet to a resident at a nursing home.
I want to add one more thing. Everyone is fighting private battles we know nothing about. Most will hide them completely as they struggle to get through the day. One small act of kindness may be the thing that means more to them than you could imagine.
So, are you with me? Let’s all take on the Kindness Challenge and turn little kindnesses into a great end to 2020.
Let me know?