Every so often an especially insightful book prompts me to reflect on or change my behavior, attitudes or both. Years ago, after reading “Type A Behavior and Your Heart” by two San Francisco cardiologists, Dr. Meyer Friedman and Dr. Ray H. Rosenman, I learned to reduce stress and hostility by cramming less into my days and allowing adequate time to accomplish whatever I had to do. I just read another book, newly published, that could help many of us cope with life’s inevitable obstacles. It is “The Gift of Adversity,” by Dr. Norman E. Rosenthal, 63, the psychiatrist who first described seasonal affective disorder and how to treat it with light. The book is a kind of memoir with a twist: a series of autobiographical stories with life-changing lessons gleaned from nearly six decades of challenging events he and others experienced. Instead of stumbling blocks, the events became opportunities to step in ... Read Full Story >>
While reading the New York Times today, I came across a story titled, "Free Sweets in His Cab to Delight and Heal". Mansoor Khalid, a 37 year old electrical engineer from Pakistan has been driving a yellow cab in New York City since 1996. In 2010, his son, Saad, was born with a congenital heart defect. When Mr. Khalid visited him in the hospital after his night shift, he would bring coffee for the doctors and nurses there, who called him “coffee man.” “My average was 20 bucks every night, for coffee and sweets,” he said. Last April, Saad passed away at 18 months old. When Mr. Khalid returned to work, he decided to turn his cab into a "rolling celebration". He spends $300 a month keeping the back dashboard stocked with sweets for his passengers. From his experience in the hospital with his son, Mr. Khalid learned that giving to others could at least hide, if ... Read Full Story >>
My neighbor of thirty years is stressed out waiting for the results of a biopsy.
The Fowler family turned a disappointment into an act of tremendous generosity: when their daughter's wedding was cancelled 40 days before the event, the reception had already been paid for. Instead of cancelling the event and losing their deposit money, the family decided to invite an entirely different set of guests: 200 homeless women, children, and families. Willie and Carol Fowler, the bride's parents, contacted Hosea Feed the Hungry, an organization their daughter has volunteered for in the past, and offered to host 200 guests at Villa Christina, an upscale venue in Atlanta. "When they first called, the administration thought it was a prank call because it was too good to be true," Quisa Foster of Hosea Feed the Hungry told ABC News. "It's a very creme de la creme wedding venue, so to say that you're going to host 200 homeless individuals at Villa Christina - it sounds like a prank ... Read Full Story >>
For awhile, every time I saw my next door neighbor, I feel remorse and shame. A little while back, I had harshly reacted to him when he did something that upset me. But this is wonderful, as it has taught me to be mindful of my "reactivity," and reminded me of the high price I pay when I am reactive instead of proactive. After sitting with the discomfort for a bit, I finally apologized to him for any harm from my reaction towards his behavior. He noticed my tears as I spoke, so I guess he knew that I was sincere in expressing my regret. Now, as time continues to pass by, I feel less and less awkward when we bump into each other (which is often, given that we share a driveway :)). The thing to note here is that, when we spoke, I did not apologize for not liking what he did (because ... Read Full Story >>
This Kid Has Helping the Homeless in the Bag! At 12-years old, Braeden Mannering is already well on his way to running an empire! A 2013 win of Delaware’s Healthy Lunchtime Challenge brought Braeden to the White House, where Michelle Obama asked the children at the event to think about how they could pay the experience forward. A few days later, on the drive back home, Braeden saw a homeless man in the rain. He had his parents stop so that he could give the man a bag of snacks. Braeden knew at that moment that this was how he wanted to pay it forward. Since that day in July, 2013, Braeden has handed out over 8,000 bags to the homeless through his organization Brae’s Brown Bags, also known as 3B. These bags vary in contents, and include food, toiletries, and even a book for the kids’ bag. In addition to packing ... Read Full Story >>
A true kindness soul! ❤️Bless this man.
A 91-year-old man fighting cancer is knitting warm hats for the homeless while bedridden in hospice care. Despite being weak and frail, with a mass on his kidney, Morrie Boogart, has knitted more than 18,000 hats.
I allowed myself to receive. These flowers were gifted to me by our local florist. I had placed an order with him for flowers to be delivered to a dear friend overseas. For reasons unknown to both my florist and myself, the flowers were never delivered and after multiple contacts with the overseas supplier, who kept saying "tomorrow" for days on end (with no explanation!) we canceled the order. My florist called to apologize and said he wanted to send me a bouquet of flowers to make up for the mishap. Even tho I assured him it wasn't his fault & that he didn't have any control over the mishandling of my order, he insisted he wanted to send me flowers. We went back and forth on this & finally I realized this was something that would make him feel better and that I should just say thank you and let him ... Read Full Story >>
I had an "ichi-go ichi-e" meeting on the subway ride home this evening with the gal sitting next to me.
We talked all the way home (a 30-minute ride!). It was like talking with an old friend and many laughs were shared. At the end, I gifted her with a peace dove and shared a touch on her arm and blessed her as I got up to leave the subway car.
Also had an "ichi-go ichie-e" with a 93-year-old woman sitting at the table next to ours in the restaurant. She was so spirited and joyful that I leaned over and asked her what was her "secret" ,
It's so easy to make friends – all it takes is reaching out with a smile and sharing conversation. Grateful.
A day away from technology, spent lots of time outdoors, being quiet & still, enjoying the sun, trees, breeze. Renewing . Grateful .
"What you will see is love coming out of the trees, love coming out of the sky, love coming out of the light. You will perceive love from everything around you. This is the state of bliss."
Miguel Ruiz, The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom
I felt "Oneness" on the NYC subway today... I made three new friends on the subway. Two on the trip into the city and one on the way home. Three women. One nine months pregnant, who sat next to me when my husband insisted she take his seat (she refused his offer at first). She was from Spain and we chatted the whole trip into the city. Another was a young woman from Venezuela who I sat with on the bench waiting for our train to arrive. We talked about ten minutes. Exchanged cards (gave her a Smile Card & she gave me her website card. She's a healer). The third woman came on the train on our return trip and we both smiled at each other when she sat opposite me , and a few times during the ride. I felt good energy coming from her. When she was exiting she smiled and ... Read Full Story >>
I spend a lot of time at home, so there are many opportunities to interact with our great neighbors.
Today, I got a phone call from an older neighbor who lost her balance while bending over her little dog's water bowl and had fallen down. I immediately ran over to her house with a cold gel-pack in hand! Then, I stayed a while, took some cute pictures of her pup with my cell phone, saw that she was okay, and returned home.
She just called again to tell me not to worry, she is okay.
Upon returning home from her house, just as I was closing my door, I saw another neighbor (who is also a senior) climbing up a small ladder to hang something in her tree. The ladder looked precariously perched, so I ran over to check on her. She thanked me, but refused my help. I told her I would stay next to her, just in case. :)
Both these women live alone and are very independent. They are a huge inspiration!
I am grateful for the gift of each new day. The opportunities to share kindness and love with others. Grateful for the lessons learned and truths shared.
I was able to share several large salads and a big pot of soup that I made with friends and neighbors . I received the gift of friendship and warm hospitality. I learned more about how to communicate with authenticity when dealing with "uncomfortable" situations. Loving resolution was afforded by speaking my truth with kindness.
Waited for the gal at the front desk at our dentist to walk away and quickly put this bag of assorted mini-bags of popcorn, with a peace dove inside & a smile card outside, on her desk. I was still sitting in the waiting room when she returned & found it. She smiled & looked at me. I acted totally innocent :)))))
Teen Creates App So Bullied Kids Never Have To Eat Alone
School lunch can be intensely lonely when you don't have anyone to sit with. A new app aims to help change that.
Isn't this a great idea?!
The way that it works is it's a free lunch-planning app where kids can find lunch tables if they feel like they have nowhere to go. Pretty much, kids can sign up as ambassadors for a Sit With Us club and agree to post open lunches so that anyone who has the app and has nowhere to go can find a table and, hopefully, make some new friends.
Click on link to read more:
Eating out yesterday, the wait staff started singing happy birthday to a gal at the table near ours, as they brought her a piece of cake with a candle burning. We all joined in, and after, I handed her a peace dove (and shared about fellow KindSpring member Mindy. and her peace dove mission). She gifted me with a beautiful smile and appreciation in return. Gave one to her friend as well, and on their way out they both stopped at our table to say thank you again. I wished her the best birthday year ever and felt that connection you share when kindness passes between you while looking in each others' eyes. ❤️
Grateful for the ease of connection Mindy's doves enable.
Thank you, Mindy, for adding so much kindness to our world. ❤️🌍❤️
(Image a Mindy photo collage)
The past two days, when I sit on a bench after my park walk, an acquaintance comes over to sit by me and needs to 'vent' about something that is apparently troubling him. He goes on and on, and sometimes repeats himself. I listen patiently and let him vent. He thanks me for letting him vent and apologizes. I tell him no apologies necessary, that we all need to be listened to.
I am learning as I listen, as some of what is irking him helps me understand some similar things that sometimes irk me as well.
I also like thinking that by sitting there on that bench in the sunshine on a glorious park day, I am getting an extra kindness act in by listening and occasionally sharing some thoughts with him that might help him.
“There are times that all you need is someone who will listen to you without judging you — not telling you what you should have done or should do, but simply, listening to you” ― Bernard Kelvin Clive
KINDNESS IN THE NEWS! Ma’am, Your Burger Has Been Paid For Phil Marden By KATE MURPHY Published: October 19, 2013 IF you place an order at the Chick-fil-A drive-through off Highway 46 in New Braunfels, Tex., it’s not unusual for the driver of the car in front of you to pay for your meal in the time it took you to holler into the intercom and pull around for pickup. “The people ahead of you paid it forward,” the cashier will chirp as she passes your food through the window. Confused, you look ahead at the car — it could be a mud-splashed monster truck, Mercedes or minivan — which at this point is turning onto the highway. The cashier giggles, you take your food and unless your heart is irreparably rotted from cynicism and snark, you feel touched. You could chalk it up to Southern hospitality or small town charm. But it’s just as likely the preceding ... Read Full Story >>
I was so inspired by the very first email I opened this morning. It was from my kind elder friend. My 80-something-year-old friend, who lives in Florida. We worked together in the late 70's/early 80's (before she moved to Florida.) and have stayed in touch over the years. This is what blew me away: "Hope that you are doing well. I have been very busy but things are dwindling down gradually. I don't think I ever will be able to "take it easy" as hey say. I have to be doing something. I am thinking seriously of starting a nice residence for homeless people, with people to help them find work or lodging of their own. It breaks my heart to see so many families with children on the street at night, or here, mostly older people in the parks, etc. Even the Salvation Army had to close their refuge for lack of funds. ... Read Full Story >>
Sitting in the waiting room yesterday at the doctor's office, two women were fidgety and impatient. There was a long wait and their unrest was palpable. I was trying to stay focused on a magazine article that really interested me, but try as hard as I could, their energy kept distracting me. I knew I should put my magazine down and 'Mishize' them, but had been resisting because I was so enjoying my read. Anyway, to make a short story long, (laughing out loud) I put down my read, smiled at them, engaged them in conversation. Trying to help the nervous woman feel calmer and trying to change the focus of the other woman who was a constant complainer. I centered myself in Light and spoke kindly. I find it so difficult to be around complainers. It so tries my patience. At one point, I told the complainer "a watched pot never boils" when ... Read Full Story >>
From The Love What Matters website:
So this guy comes in to buy a pair of shoes because his are literally falling off. Anyway his card wouldn’t work so he left.
15 minutes later he comes back in with a police officer and we’re like "Is there a problem officer?" The officer says, "No, there’s no problem...but if you still have those shoes I’d like to go ahead and buy them."
He and my co-workers split the cost of the shoes. There was no one else in the store and it wasn’t to “pretend” to care. Just a genuine act of kindness.
People are inherently kind! We just need to pay attention.
I was thrilled this morning when our favorite radio station asked listeners to message them RAKS (Random Acts of Kindness) they witnessed (or performed) during the mega snowstorm here in "The Big Apple".
Kindness seems to be showing up more and more in the media, and this is truly heartening! The RAKS included many people shoveling snow for others, gratitude from Seniors for people who helped them during the storm, a policeman who stopped what he was doing to help someone with a walker get across the street, and more. I started my day off with a big smile! 😋
Dealing with the gal at the front desk at the doctor's office is sometimes less than pleasant. She can be quite off-putting and not at all welcoming. It can make a stressful time even more stressful.
So, today, when we walked in the office, we were determined not to allow our light to be dimmed by her energy. We smiled at her and complimented her about the flowers on her desk. She smiled and chatted back.
We just need to shine brighter instead of being "reactive". Perhaps she's doing the best she can. We needed to be less reactive to her and more compassionate. We give away our power when we allow ourselves to be reactive.
Oddest thing, on way home from park, older gal sitting on a porch, asked me if I had water, as I was passing her house. I said yes, I have. She said, no, I mean for me. I said well I already drank some, do you want it? Yes she said, I am dying of thirst. I gave her my bottle of water and said keep it. She thanked me. I left. Why wouldn't she have gone into the house for water. Locked out?
I don't kow, but putting this on my RAOK list for today.
(It might have been that she was locked out.)
Funny, I usually finish all the water in my bottle after I sit on the bench after my brisk walk in the park. Today I had to cut my walk short because my sandals ribbed a blister on my foot, so I hardly drank any. Maybe the Universe knew I was going to need to share?
Dog Kindness ❤️🐶
Saw a dog tied up outside the diner we had breakfast in this morning. He was laying in the sun, panting. I told my friend I wanted to go back inside and find out who the dog belonged to and suggest they provide water , at the least. I was hesitant about doing...shy about it I guess. Put my shyness aside and marched in there , lol. Had no trouble finding the owners and led him over to the gal at the take-out counter and requested water for the dog. I watched his owner giving the happy dog the water as we drove away. Motivated by my love for animals I went from wimp to Warrioress rather quickly. It made me smile 😋
Just popped in to read a few of your shares & immediately felt happiness. Thank you all for being who you are and for sharing yourselves here. That in itself is an awesome kindness act to others!
Sending love and light to all of you, and wishing you a positive and joyful day of loving one another.
Was able to listen to & encourage two good friends (who are always there for me when I need a friend) this week. They just needed to share some feelings.
Easy to do..listen, hug, bring snacks :))
Warm & Wonderful Peace Dove Encounter.....
We took the subway into Manhattan today & as we entered the subway car a young man got up to give me his seat. I thanked him & he flashed a big smile. So, of course, I handed him one of Mindy's peace doves (never leave home without a few). I explained how my friend makes them & that there was a blessing tucked inside. He was visibly touched & expressed deep appreciation & we were grinning at each other, as was everyone in earshot.
A while later, as the train was pulling into his station, he came over to us & embraced us both so warmly and told us to keep on loving one another. I assured him we would & had been for 38 years. It was such a good exchange of loving energy on the New York subway. The ripples were felt by lots of people as there were big smiles all around us. It felt so good. 😋
Yet another big carton of oranges and grapefruits gifted to us by our former neighbor who now lives in Florida! They are always appreciated and there are always more than enough to share with neighbors
When the mailman rang our bell, he left with two oranges. Hubby dropped some off with our neighbor who rescued a puppy mill dog on his way to the park. I had fun gifting the neighbors on either side of our house, and tomorrow a friend is stopping by to get some.
I love how one gift given to us enables so many ripples of giving.
Every 3 months, a former neighbor of ours who moved to Florida sends us a huge carton of grapefruits & navel oranges. It's way too much for just the two of us to consume, so we leave bags of citrus on various neighbors' doorsteps with a SMILE Card in the bag. Today my husband was the "citrus-fairy" who dropped off the bags. :)