At the beginning of the year I started volunteering for Look Good Feel Better, a programme for people undergoing cancer treatment. I always come away from workshops feeling so inspired, these women are going through possibly the most difficult and challenging time of their lives and yet they walk in with a smile, are happy to chat, swap stories and have a laugh.
The last workshop I volunteered at, I was talking with a lady called Helen. I asked her how her morning had been and she told me it had been really lovely. Thinking that perhaps she’s been for breakfast at her favourite cafe or gone for a walk in the park, I asked her what she’d been up to. She told me that she’d had a nice chat with her taxi driver, and then someone in the hospital had helped her find the room the workshop was being held in. That was it. Nothing remarkable or out of the ordinary, but for Helen – those two small acts of kindness had made her morning ‘really lovely’.
It made me think that we never really know what people are going through. Sometimes small acts of kindness can make someones day, like taking time to have a chat or holding a door open. Complimenting someone. Something. Anything.
We are all so busy rushing around, closed off, reluctant to interact or even smile at each other.
Some time ago, I was struggling at a checkout with a wriggling toddler when my stroller fell to the floor and the contents of my bag spilled out. It was one of those moments that I just wanted to cry. In a queue of people who pretended not to notice what happened, an elderly lady behind me picked my stroller up and helped me collect the contents of my bag. I thanked her and moved towards the checkout thinking how lovely and helpful she had been. As she walked past me outside the shop, she insisted on giving me $2 for my daughter to have a ride on a Wiggles car. I was amazed by how kind she was.
From now on, I am going to try my best to be more mindful and kind every day.
Are you involved with a charity?
Have you experienced a random act of kindness recently?