World Kindness Day is officially observed on November 13th. Wouldn’t it be nice if it were every day, or at least once a week? Well, it can be with these thirteen ideas!
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For obvious reasons, I listed thirteen ideas for World Kindness Day (celebrated on 11/13). Of course there are many more ideas out there, but these are specific. Specifically stealthy, like a ninja. No one needs to know, a committee doesn’t need to be formed to carry them out, and public recognition isn’t necessary. Kindness should become habit forming, beyond just a one-time good deed. These ideas are hand-picked for teens and adults from two sources: Do Nice, Be Kind, Spread Happy – a “keeper book” my PaperPie company no longer carries, but have since kept for myself. The second is from life itself.
Kindness for Teens
Remember when our kids were little, and we would remind them to say please and thank you, mind your manners, and be helpful? Hopefully, all those things stuck with them. As I was thinking about kindness day, I also began thinking about ways to go beyond the basics of being polite and having good manners. Sure, their dad and I have prepped them to be good people, but a refresher is never time wasted, especially when it’s in the form of a boost beyond the basics.
Thirteen Ideas to start today
There are a ton of kindness ideas on the internet, and they are all good ones. I would encourage anyone to do them as they feel comfortable. However, several of them are just awkward, especially for shy teens. Give a compliment to a stranger? Hand out flowers on the street corner? Ummmm, that one would be a stretch for me to do, and I’m one who will talk to most anybody!
So here are 13 super-secretive ideas that no one has to know that it’s you – in fact, it’s better if they don’t.
- Smile tally. I say this first, because “keep a smile” is something that’s been said to me as long as I can remember. Keep a count (to yourself) of how many smiles you can give, and how many you receive. You could partner with a sibling, friend, or parent, and make it a friendly competition.
- Leave a book and a note in Little Free Libraries. Write on the note how much you enjoyed the book, or your favorite character. A personal recommendation is always a nice surprise.
- Do the same for donated clothing. Leave a note in the pocket of the winter coat that no longer fits you. “Hope this coat keeps you warm”, or “my arms got too long for this” is sure to make the new owner smile.
- Do you have an artsy teen? Bring back the kindness rock fad, or leave a small piece of art you made somewhere to be found. Not artsy? No problem. Write or type out a simple joke to leave to make someone smile. If you need inspiration, these are great joke books!
- Hide sticky notes with a positive message in random places.
- How about leaving a positive review on Google if you visited a cool place, restaurant, or store? Sure the negative ones are helpful and sometimes entertaining, but people are more likely to leave negative reviews. Be different!
- Teach your new drivers to be courteous on the roads. Let someone merge in your lane. Everyone will likely end up at the next stoplight at the same time.
- Leave left over change in vending machines.
- Reverse robbery. Leave a note, or a couple of bucks in an unsuspecting pocket of a family member.
- When dining out, leave an encouraging note on a napkin or the bill with a generous tip.
- Kindness graffiti. Chalk up your neighborhood with a smiley face or kind phrase.
- Do the obvious. Lend a hand, open a door, and always put away a cart.
- Be social on social media! Be generous with likes and comments. Those positive affirmations can really make someone’s day! Plus, social media is more fun as a participant than a silent lurker.
Be sure to grab my Niceness Ninja printable in the Free Resource Library – keep it close by!
The teen years are the perfect time to review, model, and share kindness. They will soon be heading into a world that can be bitter. Make it better!
“The everyday kindness of the back roads more than makes up for the acts of greed in the headlines.” -Charles Kuralt