On my way out the building in the morning, I search my pockets for 5 rupee coins. If I have one, I go to the shop downstairs and buy 5 packets of Gems-- an Indian version of M&Ms. There are 3 Gems per packet, giving me 14 chances to make someone smile (there would be 15 but invariably the first Gem ends up in my own mouth!). On the first day, I gave one each to the two youngs sons of my dhobi (washerman), and to the boy who lives in the makeshift shack in front of my building. Their hands were really dirty so I put them straight into their mouths. I thought for a second about giving them an impromptu lesson in hand-washing, but they are too young to understand Hindi and I haven't learned enough Kannada to explain properly. Next time I'll pick up the basics, and use ... Read Full Story >>
My first full time job after high school was selling vacation packages via telephone for a well known company. One day, the dialer connected me to a man that answered the phone and sounded a bit out of breath. I started with my normal pitch, and expecting to hear the normal, "I don't want any," and be hung up on. Instead he spoke in a faint, weak voice and began to tell me how he wished he could take a vacation like the one I was offering, but couldn't because he was dying of emphysema. He explained how he was on oxygen, and it took almost all his energy just to get to the phone to answer the call. I apologized, and my heart fell into my stomach. He asked me if I smoked, which I did, and then begged me to stop. He told me smoking is what was ... Read Full Story >>
One day, while I was walking to work, I decided to bring some flowers that I had picked from my garden that morning. I came across a random stranger, and was inspired to give the bunch to him with a smile card. Struck by the sense of joy I felt from giving flowers to another person, and maybe brightening his day, I wanted to do it again. When I got to my office, I had the idea of anonymously leaving flowers around the workplace. Sometimes, the impersonal atmosphere of the building where I work numbs my spirits a little. It's a nice building, with great light, but it just feels a little sterile sometimes. I figured lots of people might feel the same way, so why not put a little beauty there, and throw in an inspirational quote while I'm at it? After all, who doesn't like flowers? So, for the past month, I've been putting flowers ... Read Full Story >>
I work in a pharmacy, on the main cash, full time. I love it, it's the perfect job for where I am in life, I feel like I'm learning so much from people. I always tell everyone who I serve to "have a great day" as they leave, and I always add a smile. A few weeks ago a lady was in the pharmacy. She wallked by me close to the end of the night, looking concentrated, but calm. I told her to have a great day, and as usual, smiled at her. To my surprise, she broke down in tears. I don't know why she was crying, but it was pretty obvious that she must have been having a horrible day. She quickly said: "Thank you, that means more right now then you can imagine." And managed a smile, even though she was still crying. I wanted to go over and hug ... Read Full Story >>
My scheduled day of kindness this week is tomorrow (yes, I’m still doing it each week, just haven’t written about them all!) but I was not sure what I would do. While catching up on some of the stories here today, I decided I will make it Free Hug Friday! My catch phrase tomorrow any time I see someone a little down or frustrated is to say to them “Looks like someone could use a hug!” and then let them have it! I’ll certainly have to be a little careful so I don’t scare some of the people inmy office. Most of them think I am a little off anyway, so they will just add this to the list of strange things they’ve seen me do. I have noticed how much a touch or hug can mean to people, even if they don’t realize it at the time so I’m going ... Read Full Story >>
About nine years ago I worked at a large downtown hotel. Since we were connected to a mall and a public parking garage, anyone could just pretty much walk into the hotel area. We started having a big problem with homeless youth living in our stairwells at night. The stairwells went largely unused because of their hidden nature and the fact that once inside, you could only go down and exit to the street, all the doors locked behind you and you could not travel between levels and exit back into the hotel. As night manager, I ended up being the one to evict these youth, night after night after night. One night there were seven homeless young people and a puppy, in a total of three locations. I hated to do it on rainy nights, but it was my job, and some guests felt threatened when encountering tattooed and pierced youth ... Read Full Story >>
Some of the women at my work had been hit up to buy cookies from some Girl Scouts they knew. We wanted to support the young girls but we were all working on losing weight. We were wondering what to do when we got the idea to send the cookies to the troops overseas.
My daughter was serving in Iraq when this happened. I packaged them up in a care package and sent them out to my daughter's unit. My daughters unit enjoyed them so much and we got lots of appreciative letters and emails from them. It was so lovely to receive all of those and see what an impact a small gesture on our part had had.
They were flying a flag at their unit and told us they were going to bring it home for us to fly here.
What a blessing was brought out by wanting to support one cause by buying cookies and bringing smiles and love to another cause!
From 1993 through 1998 I was a vendor for Chevrolet dealearships. Each week I would take a look at their used cars that were for sale. I would fix cracks in leather, cigarette burns in fabric, re-color carpets that had stains, repair windshields that had been hit by a rock, etc. Every week I would walk into this specific Chevrolet dealer's used car lot to see what the used cars needed in the way of repairs. The general manager's wife was named Cindy. Cindy was always very rude, treating me like I was below her or that she was better than me. I was always upbeat, possitive and kind, but that never seemed to work with her. One day she accused me of charging her to dye the carpet in a mini-van that had a stain in the carpet. She had driven the van for the weekend and said the stain was not there. Just trying to continually be agressive, and negitive without ... Read Full Story >>
I came across HelpOthers one afternoon at work and I left my office that day filled with inspiration, wondering how I could make a difference in someone's life, even if only for a moment. I'm in a period of transition moving to a new home as a single parent with three children, finances are tight, my mom is fighting ovarian cancer, my sister has been laid off, my ex-husband is out of work. Life is less than rosy for me right now and I was eager for an opportunity, quite honestly just to feel better about life and make someone else feel better. I was eager to give. As I left the parking lot, I made my way down the street towards my home. It was an especially hot day even at this late hour of the afternoon. I stopped at an intersection and idly watched a young woman make her way through ... Read Full Story >>
I submited a kindness idea to Helpothers.org $100 kindness contest and I won. Armed with $100 and a mission - WOW! What an amazing week I just had! It started out last weekend - the first goal was to fill 20 “Smile Baggies” to give out. I had so much fun all Saturday picking out the items to buy. I'm a single mom of a teenager, so the opportunity to buy something without worrying about whether it would hurt our monthly budget made me feel like I had won the lottery! I picked out some practical items – a post-it note pad, pen, hand sanitizer wipes, and breath mints. But since it was a “smile baggie”, I also got some fun stuff too – microwave popcorn, hot cocoa, bubble gum, a smile stamp, and a small bottle of bubble bath. I spent Sunday night bagging all the goodies and attached the following letter to each bag: "HI! This ... Read Full Story >>
I've mainly been using my smile cards in paying for the person behind me at the Burger King and McDonald's drive-thrus that I go to. However, sometimes I find myself yearning to be more creative with them. I have over 250 of them to distribute since I "made" my own and ordered them through a website that prints and ships out custom cards. I have decided to bring kindness to the staff and students at the school where I work. I will keep my eyes and ears open to see whose day could use a smile. I'm sure I'll get to everyone sooner or later or better yet, everyone who receives smile cards will eventually be able to help out and spread the smiles with me. Today, I enlisted another co-worker to anonymously deliver a smile to my first recipient. She was more than happy to be included and said she just loved things like ... Read Full Story >>
I am a social worker and substance abuse counsellor. I wanted to tell everyone about my very dear friend and mentor who passed away a few months ago. I met him many years ago while doing my internship in the county correctional facility. He was directing a program he had designed to help inmates with their drug and alcohol problems. He was always coming up with novel ways to bring hope and help to these men and their families. One of his favorite events was the toy drive he would run every Christmas for the children of the inmates. He did this for twenty years until his sudden death. As last Christmas approached I decided that this tradition HAD to be carried on, for the children as well as the memory of my friend. But the file where he kept the names of the people who had helped him over the years had gone ... Read Full Story >>
In August, an intern came to work at my company. As I began to get to know her I was inspired by her story. In addition to coming from the inner city and having suffered many abuses as a child, her story was one of courage. At age 20 she went to bed with a headache and woke up paralyzed and unable to speak. She had a brain virus that caused the brain to swell. She had to relearn to talk, walk, write and lost much of her vision and balance. Despite all that she continued with her education and graduated in December with a bachelor's degree. Her family was not supportive, her mother did not even wish to attend the graduation. The last week she was here I told her to show up early and dress up as we were taking someone else to lunch. Instead, I had a surprise. When ... Read Full Story >>
I have been sending out smile cards with little gifts around my work place for about six months. Since I place the gifts in our interoffice mailbox, I never know who gets them or see their reactions. As I place gifts in the mail box I imagine people's reactions and it makes me happy to know that maybe I am making someone's day a little brighter.
Today I got to witness the reaction. Apparently, one of the little gifts I left in the mailbox this morning made it's way to a co-worker of mine. Today's gifts was a little cloth kleenex holder than you can leave in your purse and a yarn flower bag tag, so my co-worker, a guy, passed it along to another female co-worker. I heard them talking as they figured out what it was and why they had received it , and the whole concept of "paying forward." I later heard her talking and brainstorming on what she would like to do. It was exciting to hear others get excited about the "pay it forward" concept and hear their ideas.
I wanted to share something that put a smile on my face this morning. My work place is very diverse, as matter of fact, my company ranks in the top 10 among the most diverse companies in America. With this being the case, a lot of times we run into situations where there is a language barrier. Last week while I was at work, one of my coworkers twisted her wrist while lifting something that might have been too heavy for her.This particular coworker of mine speaks little English and my Spanish needs “mucho” work. But we have never had a problem communicating. When I ran into her shortly after her injury, I took a look and I knew that a simple first aid routine was in order. With me being an athlete, I knew that a simple procedure called 'RICE' (Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation), was what she needed until she ... Read Full Story >>
My husband works for a company that provides 24/7 care and housing for people with mental, physical and developmental disabilities. Here in Arizona, brutal budget cuts have slashed funds for those most in need. My husband loves his job and knows he is serving an important purpose, but sometimes the cuts affect morale. I decided to start sending a basket of goodies to work with my husband every Wednesday, which is the day that all staff members come in to pick up their checks. I figured it might give them a little extra reason to smile. On the first Wednesday, I sent these delicious maple leaf cookies I found that are made Canada. I wrapped them individually in cellophane (because there are lots of employees and I wanted everyone to get at little something). When my husband arrived home from work, he brought me the following note from one of his ... Read Full Story >>
18 years ago I discovered I was unexpectedly pregnant, I was on my own and in an extremely limited financial situation. I worked at a pet shop, a job I loved, but cleaning cages with unrelenting nausea was pretty awful to deal with. Having little money, and unable to keep anything down, I started losing weight instead of gaining it. There was a neighbor woman I had visited with a couple of times, and to my surprise, she started working at the pet shop too. Everyday, for lunch, she would produce large, organic salads and other very healthy meals. To my surprise she insisted that I have some of her lunch. I tried to refuse, but she was determined. Puzzled, I managed to eat, and when I admitted to everyone at work that I was pregnant, she was very excited, and kept on feeding me, despite the fact that I couldn't hold it ... Read Full Story >>
My husband and I have always been friendly with the clerks at the local convenience store where we often get gasoline. I don't think people appreciate what a difficult job these folks have sometimes. They work for a little over minimum wage and I often wonder how they make ends meet. One of the clerks, "Charlie," was missing her glasses one day. I commented on it and she said they'd been broken and that she couldn't afford a new pair. It was obvious that she was having a difficult time. We wondered how we could help, so turned to our own eye doctor for assistance with a plan. We had his secretary contact her, asking her to come in for an eye exam free of charge. We told the doctor to let her order whatever glasses she wanted and that we would pay for them. Although Charlie questioned what was going on, ... Read Full Story >>
I used to work in a hospital as a Pharmacy Technician. As part of our duties we would make rounds of all the nursing stations to pick up orders deliver medication, etc. On one of my rounds I met an elderly lady. She was sitting outside a room crying. People walked past and saw her crying but nobody offered to help. I stopped and asked if she was okay. She said her husband was in the room - dying. I asked if I could call anyone or do anything for her but she said she didn't have any family near-by and they never had any kids. So, I just sat there a while, holding her hand and listening to her. This went on for weeks, me listening and hugging, and her waiting and crying. Well one day on my rounds I saw her sitting there, not crying. So, I went to sit with ... Read Full Story >>
A Minnesota Dairy Queen manager is getting widespread kudos for an act of kindness that required giving one customer the deep freeze treatment after some questionable behavior. Joey Prusak had just finished serving one of his regular customers when the visually impaired man unknowingly dropped a $20 bill from his pocket. A woman in line behind him quickly picked up the money – and then put it in her purse. "She picked it up so quickly that I thought she was going to give it back but she just stood there and waited," Prusak told TODAY.com. "I was extremely confused when she let the man walk by. She just stood there and put it in her purse and I was like, 'Really?' Prusak, 19, said the experience left him feeling "violated." After taking a few seconds to compose himself, he politely asked the woman to give the money back. The woman refused, insisting ... Read Full Story >>
I finished my community service requirement last year by working in the school library.
All the librarians are women over 65 and most have trouble shelving books on the upper shelves. So, I decided to work for another year to help them out because most of the volunteers from last year are not coming back.
The librarian was so happy she bought a whole can of peanut butter cups so I can have one every week!
Today I held a very intriguing and thought provoking Diversity Discussion with my staff members. As part of our weekly meetings we hold 20-30 minutes to talk about a diversity issue, and how it relates to our jobs.
Today's discussion was held on "Disability." It took a while for the staff to get warmed up, but after they did warm up, it was easy to tell they were engaged and ready to learn more. I was just extremely happy they received the information well and want to learn more.
My act of kindness: simply teaching others to see those that are unseen by society and how we as able bodied people can make the world a better place for them.
Did the "usual" acts of kindness today. Encouraged a co-worker, left homemade caramels on co-worker's desk, advocated for a student to be placed in public school, and sent an encouraging email to a teacher who is moving to another job.
Today seemed to be MY day though! 3 boxes of books were delivered to me for my trade in project for the 4th graders and a previous director of special education read my facebook post and sent me a check for books!!! Tomorrow I have to pick up more books from 3 more people!!!!
Almost every day, during our breaks, an older man who is my colleague closes himself off from the noise in the break room by focusing on a cryptogram puzzle in the newspaper instead. One day I decided to help him solve the puzzle and he told me he has tinnitus. Imagine working in a busy school when you are so sensitive to noisy surroundings! I also still have a problem with busy, loud environments, so I decided to join him in solving those puzzles. Every day we sit at the crowded table, fixing today's puzzle. We are still there, in the moment and talking to the people around us, but at times we tune out and puzzle for a bit. Occasionally other colleagues start helping us with the puzzle as well. I am very grateful that my colleague, who is really struggling with his hearing, has taught me how to zone yourself out when the ... Read Full Story >>
A friend had a son who committed suicide and she was returning to work for the first time after.
Apparently I met her in the parking lot and walked her in and talked of other things. Like what had been happening at work. I didn't think much of it. I was just glad she was back.
A month later she stopped me and thanked me for walking her in. Said she was afraid someone would ask her about him and she'd break down and go home.
So I had helped her out. I consider that the greatest compliment . That I got to help and I was just being me. I love it when it works! You never know what good you might do someone. so always be kind.
I remember back one of the last few years at a renaissance faire. I had spent about 5 years working a booth across from a wonderful comedian and actor. His name was Moonie, he was absolutely amazing, and his skit was done using nothing but gestures and noises instead of words. I remember watching his shows and always being entertained. Even when he was having a bad day, the audience wasn't cooperating, his juggling or tight-rope skills weren't as sharp as he would have liked, he always managed to keep things fun, funny, lively, and fresh. That's a very hard thing to do considering I watched him literally do the same skits, gags, and jokes for 5 years several times a day, each weekend. When I heard it would be his last year performing at the faire, I had wanted to thank him for all the amazing shows he had done on ... Read Full Story >>
I had to stop at the lab and have some blood work done on my way to work this morning. There is a Tim Horton's coffee shop right next to the lab so I bought a couple of boxes of Timbits (donut holes) and took them to work to share with my co-workers. It's amazing how many folks stop by to say hi when they know there are goodies on my counter top. 8-)
I work as a Guest Relations Manager in a hotel which is currently closed because we are only open during the summer season. The administrative departments such as accounting, management and reservation department of the hotel work 12 months ( full time ).
For some reason, everyone at work looks really stressed and exhausted. I understand that everyone has their own problems in life, but I would like to see them smile from time to time.
So, I decided that it would be a good idea to bring them a gift as small as a banana or cake once a week. I do not make a lot of money, but the idea of bringing them a present once a week makes me really happy especially the smiling faces that I get or a warm "Thank you" is making me so grateful for the kindness that I have towards other people..
So be good do good and make people Smile.... Take care everyone ..
When my students came in from recess today, they all had a treat on their desks, a small bowl of pretzels, and a RAoK card to pass on and Pay It Forward. #AprilRAoK
Today a colleague admitted he has an operation coming up and is feeling apprehensive. I didn't have much in my treats drawer at work (I'd just given all the smiley stickers to our cleaner) but I wrapped up a few things I thought would make him smile. I got a nice laugh from him :-)