At this time of year, it feels like more people are showing that extra bit of kindness towards others! Here at North York Harvest, I see it every day but more so during the winter months. There is just so much joy and holiday cheer that people have and they want to share it with those around them.
Don’t you notice the extra bit of kindness at this time of year? It’s even the smaller things like holding a door for someone or paying that extra 5 cents they need for their morning coffee. It can make someone’s day just so much brighter.
Kindness is powerful. It can completely transform your day and that of people around you.
Did you know the many advantages of kindness?
Kindness can relieve stress. Doing something nice for another person makes you feel good.
“If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.” ~Dalai Lama
Kindness is contagious. Remember that big news story a couple of years ago when people were “Paying it Forward” at the coffee shop? A person would buy the coffee for the next person in line and that pattern continued for the entire day! A person can’t help but return the favour when a kindness is bestowed upon them!
“A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees.” ~Amelia Earhart
Kindness strengthens relationships. When you perform an act of kindness for another there is just a new unspoken bond between the two of you. When it is a larger act of kindness among many people – such as sponsoring a refugee in need, a group volunteer activity or running a food drive at work – it brings a sense of community between you, your friends, your coworkers and those that benefit from your kindness.
“Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.” ~Leo Buscaglia
Kindness can make a difference in someone’s life. You might not know it, but letting another person go ahead of you in line could be the highlight of his or her day, week or even month. You never know what someone else could be going through.
“Be a rainbow in someone else’s cloud.” ~Maya Angelou
There are just so many random ways that you can show a little extra kindness this holiday season.
Here are a few ideas:
- Visiting a retirement home to spend time with someone who is lonely
- Purchasing a coffee for a stranger
- Putting some of your extra change in an expired parking meter
- Shoveling your neighbour’s driveway
- Send a thank you letter to your local fire and police departments
- Compliment someone
- Take a friend to a movie
Another easy way to share kindness is to contribute to our make a donation for people in your city that really need it! Every month over 16,000 children, parents, seniors and people on their own will come into our programs because they don’t have enough food to eat.
You can make a difference!