#BlogItForward was a challenge set by Wayfair to encourage people to do good deeds and spread some kindness into the world in December 2016.
I saw Wendy from Naptime Natter’s post about it recently and, not realising it was a year old, excitedly sat down and wrote my post before the deadline of 31st January. What a nob.
When I finally realised, I was gutted I was a year too late! Then I thought… it’s never too late to spread more kindness in the world, so why not join in anyway!
I found this bumper sticker over 10 years ago when I was backpacking in Australia and have kept it ever since. (I’ve never found anything worthy enough to stick it to!) I loved the message then and I still love it now.
I’m a big believer that kindness can cure the world if we just practice it more and actively.
My Blog It Forward acts of kindness
Here are three acts of kindness I’ve shown in the last few weeks:
I’m a volunteer breastfeeding peer supporter at my local children’s centre. It’s something I’ve been doing for 2 years and was inspired to get involved after receiving vital help from the group when Dee was tiny and new.
I now spend 2 hours a fortnight helping mums reach their breastfeeding goals, or sometimes just chatting and empathising about how hard and exhausting parenting can be in the early days!
It’s amazing how helpful it can be just to know you’re not alone and that what you’re going through is normal. I’m honoured I get to be a part of so many mum’s breastfeeding journeys.
2. Supporting and championing fundraising challenges
It seems that lots of my friends and Twitter acquaintances are taking on a whole range of challenges from dry January, climbing Mount Snowdon as a group of amputees, and running half marathons for Tommy’s, all in the name of charity! (Click on any of those links to donate to some wonderful charities!)
I’ve made a conscious decision recently to donate more to charity. I can afford it, and if I kept it I’d just spend it on things I don’t need. I tend to live to my means whatever they are, so unless I get to a point where I’m really destitute, there’s always opportunity to give more.
I’ve therefore been supporting pretty much every charity fundraiser I’ve come across and actively shared and encouraged others to do so.
I also made an appointment to give blood a couple of weeks ago but unfortunately wasn’t eligible because of a heart condition. Oh well, the thought was there!
If you would like to give blood in my place, I’d be super grateful! Register here and help save lives!!
3. Showing appreciation
Towards the end of last year we implemented an employee happiness initiative at work, and I put together an employee happiness committee in an effort to boost morale and make everyone’s work lives a little bit better.
To put it in context, there are around 20 of us in total and I’m one of four senior managers. It’s my mum’s company and she started it in the garden shed on her own, hiring me as her first employee a couple of months later. It’s very important to me that the business does well, and I think a huge part of that is making sure our employees feel valued and happy at work.
To give everyone a boost in the new year when morale can be a little low, I made an effort to write to everyone individually to thank them for all they do and what I appreciate about them. No copying and pasting, it was personal to everyone.
It was just a couple of lines in an email, but I really valued taking the time to think about everyone individually and actively acknowledge all they do. I hope it made everyone’s day a bit brighter to receive their message – it certainly made me appreciate everyone a little more.
Challenges like this are great to put the spotlight on kindness, but you don’t need to wait to start making little imprints in the world, and they don’t have to stop when the challenge does.
A smile can change someone’s day, a cup of tea has great power, and a kind word can leave a lifelong impression.
What could you do today to show kindness to someone?