Random Acts of Kindness Day: February 17, also known as Random Act of Kindness Day, is a day to practice kindness and pay it forward.

I think we sometimes are so busy in our every day lives, we just forget to be kind to others. If you’re anything like me, you may over complicate kindness. I typically think kindness has to be some sort of huge gesture. But, I have come to realize that if I were more aware of my actions and my surroundings I wouldn’t miss opportunities to bless someone else. I try to be aware of my surroundings and show kindness in everything I do. But there are many days that I fail. If you really think about it, God gives us daily opportunities to show people the same type of love that he has shown us. That’s right… DAILY. So every day, we have a choice to be people focused, or self focused. And I don’t know about you but I want to do better at being people focused. After all, it’s what I believe I’m commanded to do. 

Ephesians 4:31-32 (CSB) Let all bitterness, anger and wrath, shouting and slander be removed from you, along with all malice. And be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another, just as God also forgave you in Christ.
Matthew 7:12 (CSB) Therefore, whatever you want others to do for you, do also the same for them, for this is the Law and the Prophets
Proverbs 11:24 (CSB) One person gives freely yet gains more; another withholds what is right only to become poor.
Colossians 3:12-13 (CSB)Therefore, as God’s chosen ones, holy and dearly loved, put on compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, bearing with one another and forgiving one another if anyone has a grievance against another. Just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you are also to forgive. 
I will be honest, my walk with God is new but in the short time I have gotten to know his word and feel his love these are some verses that I have read. And there are so many more that could be listed. But for the sake of allowing you to get to some practical ways of showing Random Acts of Kindness those were my favorite. So, lets continue to what this blog is about…

In honor of Random Acts of Kindness days I wanted to list 17 ways you can show a random act of kindness today.

Invite over a family in need for dinner / Prepare a meal for a family
I think we all know a family who is struggling. Whether it be financially, physically, or emotionally. I don’t think the type of need matters. Take a opportunity to LOVE on that family. Cook them a nice home made meal… If you don’t like to cook, then take them out. But the time you have chosen to give them will be so uplifting for them. 

Leave letters of encouragement on the cars of strangers
It doesn’t have to be every car in the parking lot. I haven’t done this one yet… But I’m excited to! Words of encouragement could be something along the lines of… I hope you know you are brave, and capable, and significant. Even when it feels like you’re not. OR something as simple as… You’re amazing. Don’t over complicate it. Just do it!! (if you want a list of encouragement letters let me know! This could be a future blog post)

Pay it forward
This one has become more popular. Paying for the car behind you in the drive through at Starbucks. I have been the receiver end of this one, and on that given day, it was just what I needed. Little did that person know, I had a tough conversation with someone earlier, and their random act was a reminder that, although sometimes it may not feel like it, there is still good in this world. Now this doesn’t have to be Starbucks, and it definitely doesn’t have to just be coffee. If your friend’s favorite musician is coming to town, buy them a ticket. If you see a book and it reminded you of someone, buy it and give it to them. It can be as big or as small as you want it to.

Write letters or send care packages for soldiers
This one must feel so good. I honestly have never done it. And I have no idea why. I googled where to send a care package for a solider and there are several sites that offer information on this. It would take a few moments to write a letter and send to a solider and let them know how much you appreciate their service and sacrifice to protect our country.

Participate in a fundraiser or donate to a cause
I think we all have a cause that comes to mind. It could even be a ministry… Go ahead and donate a few extra bucks to them today. 

Walk a Neighbors Dog
I see a lot of dog walkers in my neighborhood, and I used to walk with a woman after work just so she didn’t have to walk alone. She winded up moving and I helped her move. It was a incredible experience and I know it meant a lot to her. Reaching out to a neighbor with an offer such as this could not only help them on a tough day, but it could also spark a lifelong friendship!

Volunteer at a local homeless shelter
This is something I have a strong desire to do. This is something that takes a little bit of your time and you have to organize. But it would be so humbling to spend time with people who so desperately need it. It would be amazing to connect with someone in a shelter that I could eventually invite over for Dinner and be a friend to.

Send a hand written letter to your best friend
I absolutely LOVE this. Don’t forget about your Besties. Just because they are your besties doesn’t mean they get neglected from random acts of kindness. Send them a letter and tell them how much you love them!

Bring in treats for your coworkers
I LOVE when my boss brings in danishes from a local bakery. It makes me feel so appreciated and It’s nice to know he thought of us. I could do this for my co-workers too… And it could be as little as bringing in some candy. You could also leave handwritten notes of encouragements on their desks. 

Spend quality time with someone in your family you don’t see often
WOW, this hurts me to my core. Because I am truly failing at this one… The thing that should be so simple is certainly the hardest for me. And that’s because I honestly don’t have to much time to offer. I strap myself everyday on time, and when I have some time I just want to relax and do nothing. I need to be better about spending time with my family. Especially the family I have who has spent more time on this earth then the rest of us. 

Kindness Rocks
This is so fun! And if you have kids they will LOVE it! We did it on Halloween and it was so exciting hiding the rocks for other kids to find. You can paint them and write “You are amazing”, “You are Loved”, “You Rock”, Etc. 

Handmade gift for a friend or family member
I love this one. I love making handmade gifts. It’s why I started Rachel’s Craft Room. It means a lot to the person who is receiving to know that you have taken time to not only think of a gift, but hand make it. 

Leave money on a vending machine
This would be such a special surprise. This is one of those daily acts that you could be doing. It has the ability to make someones day. 

Buy something and help support from a small business 
Oh how I love to support small business owners. I did not know the hard work, sweat, and tears that went into a small business until I started Rachel’s Craft Room. And still, I have cut back on so many orders because it’s just so much to keep up with when you have a family, and work full time. But the orders I did take on meant so much to me. When you buy something from a small business, you are supporting the dreams of someone local!
Mow, or shovel your neighbors lawn
My husband is so amazing. He always takes care of our neighbors lawn. This extra 20 min has saved her time, & money. It has also showed her that we care about her and she is loved. It could be any chore to help save your neighbor time and money. 

Pick up litter in your neighborhood
This one is key. I know there is a place you visit often that could use a serious clean up. Not only are you helping your community but your helping the environment. This is one of those daily’s. Don’t try to do it in moderation. Do it as often as possible. Invite friends or family to help you! 

Bake goods for a nursing home

It’s simple. This can be done on your own, or with a group of friends. It’s not only important you take the time to provide something homemade with love, but also to plan to spend time with the residents. I can say personally, it is an incredible experience.