Birthday Idea: Random Acts of Kindness!

by Alexandra Carmichael

My 33rd birthday was on October 1, and as a new tradition I sent out this email to my friends:

Hello amazing friends!!

Today is my 33rd birthday, and you are invited to a virtual birthday party, with a challenge!

Logistics, or My gift to you:
At 7:30 pm your time today, give yourself a big hug from me – I’m so grateful for your wonderful presence in my life!!

Challenge, or Your gift to me:
Do a random act of kindness today and tell me about it – it can be anything from the smallest smile at someone to changing someone’s life. I can’t wait to hear what you did! 🙂

Wishing you a year of happy fun and meaningful projects,
Alex 🙂

The responses flooded in, and 2 days later I sent out this note of thanks and friend-sourced ideas for random acts of kindness!

W-O-W!!! I was overwhelmed by the positive energy and love from all of you who came to my virtual birthday party! Thank you for making my 33rd so special and for touching my life.

Here are some of the amazing random acts of kindness you all did, roughly in the order they were received. Celebrate yourselves and how wonderful you are! 🙂

– I gave a thank you card and gift card to a librarian who has been helpful to me.

– I finally blogged about your recent announcement.

– I shall be counseling someone whose marriage is in difficulties.

– Thanking someone for supporting me and running with me, who helped me get started on the road to health and well-being and get myself back after having my 3rd baby.

– I had the joy of meeting an older couple in the hallway – I asked them if I could be of assistance as they looked a little lost.  They told me they had an appointment but didn’t know where they were suppose to go.  I told them I would be happy to help them, so I walked them to their next appointment. We reached their destination and I wished them a great day – they both thanked me so much and said how much they appreciated me taking the time to walk them there as “they are slow walkers”!

– I let someone else sit at the last outside table at lunch, instead of grabbing it for myself.

– I stopped what I was doing and cleared my calendar for over an hour when an old friend who really *likes* to talk, if you know what I mean, called this afternoon, instead of letting her end up in voicemail. 😉

– I noticed our bookeeper had lost weight and told her so.

– I made a donation to Room to Read in your name.

– I found the optimum spot behind a puppy’s ear and scratched him into ecstasy for 20 minutes.

– I took a friend to lunch for her last day at work.

– I watched the kids so my wife could have a quiet lunch all to herself.

– I called my spouse this morning just to thank him for his efforts helping with our child this morning and to tell him I’m thinking of him

– I wrote something nice to someone whom I suspect does not receive much kindness or attention

– I held the door open for an otherwise obnoxious person who was rude to me in an elevator

– I listened to a friend open up about how she was feeling.  The results were amazing for us both.

– I decided to skip a conference and spend the weekend with my family. When I told my son, he was very happy vs having me vanish again for the weekend.

– On my ride home I noticed that a guy’s rear tire was really low on air so I thought of you and pulled up next to him on the scooter to tell him about it so he could get it fixed.

– Yesterday my girlfriend was an hour late to meet with me and I told her it was absolutely no problem and made her feel better and hopefully less guilty.

– I decided to help out with a drum circle being held in a class at my daughter’s school (not her class though). It was a blast watching the kids get into the rhythm of drumming.

– I made a friend smile with a funny voicemail.

– I tweeted to spread the word about random acts of kindness.

Thank you, everyone, for the wonderful gift of kindness you spread!
Be well and happy,
Alex 🙂

Here’s to changing the world for the better, one small act of kindness at a time.