I’m pretty stoked to be writing about random acts of kindness. This post is full of easy ways to practice what this business is all about – being kind!
I think it’s super easy, especially as women who are emotional and sensitive, to want to give kindness to the world in MEGA, HUGE ways. And if we aren’t doing some massive and drastic, it feels like it’s not enough.
But that’s not the case! I have seen first hand what sort of impact small, random acts of kindness can do for someone.
I’ve seen the smile that someone gets on their face when I hold the door open for them, pick up something they dropped, or gave them a piece of candy.
At the end of the day, you never if someone could be having the absolute WORST day of their life when you come along and do something simple but kind for them. It could change everything for that person.
That’s pretty powerful! It makes you stop and see that kindness doesn’t have to be massive. (Of course, I am in no way discounting huge acts of kindness. Obviously those are important, too!)
By the way, if you’re interested in reading more about this meaning of kindness in my business, click here.
Let’s just dive into this so we can get you doing random acts of kindness as soon as possible! (And these are in no particular order!)
1. Write simple, nice notes to stick in books at the library.
I went through a phase of doing this when I was in high school but stopped when I realized that no one ever checked out books in my high school, LOL.
But you can do this at your high school, college, or the public library in your town. Since I moved to a bigger city, I have a MUCH bigger branch of libraries to choose from that people actually use, so I’m excited to do this. I check out books all the time! #bookworm
2. Make cookies or brownies and bring them into work for no reason.
I did this for Valentine’s Day at my part-time (I make some bomb ass brownies!) and people were so pleasantly surprised. Even though it was Valentine’s Day when I did that, they were caught off guard.
MOST people love a good cookie or brownie, so it could really brighten their day!
3. Hand-write a letter and send it to a loved one.
Listen, fam…the power of hand-written notes is NOT dead.
When I was long-distance with my boyfriend in college, we wrote and sent letters to each other, even though we texted and called every day! Was it overkill? Maybe. But was it super romantic and sweet? DUH.
You could write a letter to your partner, mom, best friend, or distant cousin that you haven’t seen in 10+ years. Whoever!
Bonus points if you send it to them snail mail style.
4. Pay for the person behind you in the drive-thru line.
This is a classic, but it’s a good one! I don’t think anyone EVER expects this to happen to them.
If you’re afraid that the person behind you could have like 6-teenage-boys-worth of food they’re paying for and you’re *broke*, you could give the cashier at the window just $10 and say, “I don’t have much, but I wanted to do something nice and at least take the price down, even I can’t pay for it all.”
This is also a good strategy at the store. Maybe it’s not a good idea for you if it looks like someone has two carts worth of groceries, but a good place would be somewhere like Family Dollar! The average person doesn’t buy a ton of stuff at a store like that, so that’s a good place to start. 🙂
5. Buy a new toy for your dog or cat to play with.
When I talk about giving kindness, I don’t mean JUST other people. I’m very into speaking about kindness in terms of the whole world. What can you do for other people AND creatures AND the environment around you?
I try to think of how I can be extra kind to my dog each day, even in a small way. I’m a workaholic so it’s really easy for me to get caught up in my work and forget that my dog just wants to have fun. When I think about that, I take 10 minutes of time out of my day to play with her, and she has SO much fun. That’s special!
Animals get really excited when they get a new toy. Personally, my dog only gets new toys on her birthday and Christmas so we try to play with her a LOT. If you want, though, buy your pet a new toy! Think about how happy they will probably be and how they’ll love you even more.
6. Rake the leaves for your neighbor.
Nobody likes raking leaves. If anyone in the world DOES like raking leaves, send them my way to rake MINE, lol.
Raking leaves isn’t always a priority in people’s lives and honestly, a lot of people probably won’t care about them. But if you knock on your neighbor’s door and say, “Hey, I just wanted to offer to rake your leaves, clean up your yard a bit?” they will probably be THRILLED.
This also applies to shoveling snow. Except that everyone has to do it, so that’s a really good one to do.
7. Share an inspirational quote you love on your Instagram Stories.
Someone might be having a really shitty day when they see your Instagram Story. They see the inspirational quote that you posted and it ends up being THE quote they needed to read that day. Imagine what sort of impact that could have!
They’ll probably end up secretly thanking you and go about their day in a little bit of a better mood.
Related: How to Spread Kindness on Social Media
8. Tell someone when you think they’re doing a good job – even if it’s not extraordinary.
I think today’s world has seriously underestimated the power of simply saying, “Hey, good job!”
I recently sent an email to my boss at my part-time job just to say I thought upper management was doing good work and he seemed to really appreciate it. You never know…it may have been the first time someone said good job in months. That email could have been a bright light on an otherwise terrible day.
You don’t have to tell someone good job only when they do something incredible or out of their way or amazing. If they’re doing *something* well, tell them.
9. Give a stranger a genuine compliment.
Again – a seriously underestimated strategy of kindness. Just this morning (as of writing this,) I complimented a woman on her pants. They were pajama pants and I’m pretty she had woken up like 10 minutes before that and was just trying to get her kid to school, but I really liked them. (They were colorful. I’m addicted to color.)
So I said, “Hey I like your pants!” and she got a HUGE smile on her face. What a good way to start the day, right?!
If you see someone wearing a piece of clothing, some shoes, or a hairdo that you really like, compliment them. You truly never know what kind of impact a simple, “Hey I like your _______” could have.
10. Share your “get-pumped-up” playlist on your social media.
Everyone likes music. Except for Angela Martin, but that’s because she’s a freaking weirdo, LOL.
Music does SO much to boost people’s moods, but sometimes it’s hard to find good music when you’re really in need of it. (Ironic, isn’t it?)
If you have a “get-pumped-up” playlist or just a simple “feel good” playlist, share it!
Someone could come across that on your social media, listen to the music you share, and suddenly have a really good freaking day.
11. Buy a candy bar and give it to someone for free.
Everyone loves candy. And if they don’t love candy, they know someone who does.
I would be really excited if someone gave me a candy bar for free. Wouldn’t you be?
12. Do a chore that your spouse was planning on doing so they don’t have to.
It’s a really good thing to come home from a long day and see something that was still on your to-do list already done. It’s a weight lifted off of you.
Pick a chore that your partner was planning on doing and do it for them.
13. Go around your block and clean up any litter you see.
This is, again, about being kind to the world around you! Also, people don’t like looking at trash. This is a good way to benefit everyone and everything!
If you don’t live in a city/suburban area, go to a hiking trail or the beach and do the same!
14. Help someone get something they can’t reach at the grocery store.
So simple, right! But I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen someone struggling to get something they can’t reach, and other people just meander past them like they’re blind!
I try to help, but unfortunately I am also short. If you’re one of those gems who’s really tall, help a girl out, will ya?
15. Offer directions to someone who looks lost or confused.
I’m convinced that the expression of being lost is one of the most easily identified on anyone’s face. The scrunched up eyebrows. The open mouth of being like, “I thought we came from this way?” The eyes full of frustration.
You can see it ALL over someone’s face.
If you know where you are and can offer directions successfully, help them out! I think you’d be surprised by how appreciative they are. (Just make sure your directions are right. You don’t want them cursing you out later for leading them wrongly.)
16. Tell your family members you love them and appreciate their existence.
People appreciate being appreciated.
Do this especially when they have NOT just done something for you – just tell them when they’re least expecting it!
17. Give a coat, a scarf or gloves to a homeless person who needs them.
This is especially a good idea if you’re going through old winter clothes/outerwear you have and are trying to get rid of some things.
Anything you don’t want anymore, give to a homeless person. Winter is cold as hell, and they would probably appreciate the extra layer you give them more than you know.
18. Hold the door open for someone.
Once again, this is SUCH a simple act. But alas, I see it NOT being done all the freaking time!
It takes literally 3 seconds of your time to hold the door open for someone. Do not tell me you don’t have 3 seconds to do that because I know that you’d be lying.
19. Text your friend a funny meme to cheer them up.
The best part about this one is that you don’t have to wait until someone is having a bad day to send them a meme. Everyone loves memes all the time.
Send it to them, make them laugh. If they don’t *need* it right then, they’ll probably save it if it’s a really good meme and then look at it when they DO need a laugh.
They’ll think of you, too, since you’re the one that sent it to them. #winwin
20. Put post-it notes with positive messages on them in a public bathroom.
Half of people that see these notes think it’s dumb, but the other half thinks it’s really sweet.
Ignore thinking about the people that think it’s dumb. Think about the people that LOVE seeing those messages and could probably really use them.
21. Give someone a flower.
Everyone loves flowers!
22. Make a meal at home and deliver it to an elderly person in your neighborhood.
Ugh, this one tugs at my heart strings. I think we as a society need to give a lot more care to our elders. They are special, special people.
I would make a meal, deliver it to them hot but in a container of some kind. That way, if they aren’t hungry at that time or just had some food, they can keep it in their fridge and heat it up later. Make sure you make something that be kept for a couple of days!
23. Say please and thank you to someone.
WOW. You probably read that and was like, “Yeah, DUH.”
But do you know how many people DON’T say those two simple things?
I’ve worked in customer service for 4 ish years at the time of writing this. I have spent 4 years doing things for THOUSANDS of people without pleases and thank yous in return.
They mean more than you know. Say them. Just do it. Even if YOU are having a bad day. Say them.
24. Give out hot chocolate to people on the street for free.
Or lemonade, if it’s summer time.
This might be something you can only do a few of, depending if you’re making them yourself or don’t have money to buy hundreds of them, which I totally understand.
Even if you just give ONE away, you’re making an impact on that person’s life in a positive way.
25. Help someone pick up their things if they drop them.
The exact same concept of #14 applies here, except you DON’T have to be tall. I call that a win.
26. Donate clothes you don’t wear to Goodwill or a homeless shelter.
27. Tell someone they’re beautiful.
It’s one thing to be told you look pretty, but to be called beautiful is like a whole other level.
And no, you don’t have to be dating someone or creepily hitting on them to call someone beautiful. I told a new girl I work with that just the other day. Just do it (and mean it.)
28. Give some food to cats you see outside that look like they could use it.
We’re back to the concept of giving kindness to other creatures!
There are a LOT of outside cats, and they don’t always have the resources they need to survive. It’s a sad thing to think about it, but it’s the reality.
I would highly recommend putting the food AWAY from your house, unless you want some cat friends who will never leave your front door for the rest of eternity. I mean, that’s something I would LOVE, but not everyone is into that.
29. Say hello to a homeless person on the street – just make them feel seen.
This is SO HUGE. I can’t say anything about this from experience. But I’ve heard stories.
So often, homeless people are viewed with such negative eyes. People assume that every homeless person is a psychopath who will chase you for your money if you even make eye contact.
Don’t get me wrong, there are some weirdos out on the street. I’ve been confronted by them myself.
But honestly? Most of them aren’t. Most of them are HUMAN BEINGS who are just trying to survive.
Simply saying hello to them and acknowledging that they exist, is a big deal. They want people to see that they are more than just an inconvenient speck of dirt on the ground.
You don’t have to have a full-blown conversation if you don’t want to. But guess what?
They’re human, too. Treat them like it.
30. Leave $5 under the windshield wipers of someone else’s car.
First of all, I would most definitely leave that in some sort of card. A random $5 is *probably* not gonna last very long hanging out on their car.
You can also write in the card and say something like, “Here’s $5! I hope you have a great day. Do me a favor and be kind to someone else today – spread the light.”
Boom. Day made. It rocks.
31. Give a bottle of clean water to someone less fortunate than you.
Similar concept to giving clothes to someone in need. Clean water is, unfortunately, a luxury in today’s world. Give someone that luxury who could really use it.
32. Print out a picture you have with someone, frame it and give it to them as a random gift.
People love pictures! They may not say it, but there’s truly something special about having a printed, even framed, picture with you and your loved ones around you.
Do that for someone else!
33. Hang balloons for your partner and simply celebrate the fact that they exist.
Balloons are so fun, and they’re so damn cheap. #dollartree
Buy your partner’s favorite color of balloons and hang them all around your house while they’re gone. When they come back and ask what it’s for, just say, “I wanted to celebrate that you exist and that we’re living this life together and it’s amazing!”
Cheesy? Yes. Adorable as shit? You betcha.
34. Give a tissue to someone who’s crying.
I’m just gonna say that this is a great strategy when you’re on a college campus. Those kids have it rough.
They could be crying about the final exam they didn’t study for, or something much worse, but no matter what, give them a tissue. Make sure it’s soft.
35. Wrap some cold medicine in a small package and give it to someone who might need it.
See #31. This is especially good in winter!
36. Donate just $5-10 to a charity that means something to you.
Donating to a charity doesn’t have to mean writing out $10,000 checks on those big checks that cost way too much money to make in the first place.
Have $5 to spare? Donate it to YOUR favorite charity. Every penny counts!
37. Say hello and smile at someone who works in customer service.
Customer service sucks.
38. Give someone your seat on the bus.
This, of course, should be done for people that are in need (i.e. physical ailments, pregnancy, old age, etc)
BUT! You can do this for anyone. Just to be nice. That’s what this is all about!
39. Take 5 minutes to speak with an elderly person who’s sitting alone.
The elderly have a whole lifetime’s worth of stories they can share with you. Honestly, you might get some solid words of wisdom from talking to them.
The other part of it, too, is that you never know the reason why they’re sitting alone. It could be that they chose that for the day. Or maybe their spouse passed away. Maybe they don’t have any family left. There could be any number of reasons.
And finally, I’ve talked to a lot of older people who say they LOVE speaking with the younger generation. You could really make their day.
40. Say thank you for a veteran for their service.
Obvious. But not done enough.
41. High five a little kid.
I don’t know what it is, but little kids LOVE to high fives. Not all of them, but a majority. The joy you see come across a little kid’s face when you look at them and go, “HIGH FIVE!” is priceless.
Warning: kids pride themselves on how hard they can hit you. Be prepared.
42. Give a copy of your favorite childhood book to a kid so they can read it.
Ahhhh I LOVE this idea! I think I would give kids copies of my Dr. Seuss books. I still read those!
If they’re a bit older, I’d give them Harry Potter. If you don’t love Harry Potter, you’re wrong.
But the beauty of this random act of kindness is that you are a) showing kids that sharing is caring and b) getting them started on reading, which is an invaluable skill and habit to have as an adult!
43. Offer to help someone get their groceries into or out of their car.
If you’re at the store and you see a mom with 3 kids throwing temper tantrums around her and she’s just trying to get the groceries in the car, help her out. That cold stuff has to get into a fridge or a freezer soon, bro!
If your neighbor just came home with 800 bags of groceries, help him/her out. We all know that it’s everyone’s goal to get all the groceries inside in one trip, so let’s help each other achieve that goal.
44. Draw something or color a pretty picture and give it to someone who looks down.
I enjoy drawing and coloring, but honestly I enjoy it more when someone else gives me something THEY drew or colored.
There are a ton of those adult coloring books out there that you can color in, tear out, and give someone to brighten their day! You could also write a note on it that says, “I hope your day is great! Sending you positive vibes!”
If you ARE one of those amazing people who can draw, get out those pencils and pens and do something similar.
45. Offer to drive so other people don’t have to.
Most people don’t particularly LOVE to drive. If someone else offers, they’re all for it.
Bonus points again if you offer yourself up to be the designated driver.
46. Give someone a card celebrating them when it’s NOT their birthday or a holiday.
This is pretty similar to #33. Maybe do both at the same time?
47. Give out free notebooks to college students.
Any college student should appreciate being given a free notebook. Depending on the major, they go through a lot of them!
If they don’t need the notebook immediately, they could probably use it for the next semester. Or save it for scrap paper. Use it as a journal. Honestly, anything is possible! But it’s free. College students love #free.
48. Pick up sticks in your neighbor’s yard before they mow the lawn.
This was instilled into me by my mother from a very young age (hi mom.)
DO NOT MOW THE LAWN BEFORE PICKING UP THE STICKS.
Mowing with sticks in the yard will destroy your mower. Those suckers are pricey. Let’s help save your neighbor a few bucks, shall we?
Go through and pick up those sticks. Admittedly, depending on the yard, that can take, like…a long freaking time. But your neighbor will be happy and thankful, and that’s what matters!
49. Buy a cute stuffed animal and give it to someone.
Anyone who says they don’t like stuffed animals is a liar.
I still have like 100 stuffed animals from my childhood AND adulthood alike and I’m even remotely ashamed to say that.
You can take it to the next level and wrap and little note around it that says, “Have a great day! Pass on the kindness!”
50. If you see someone pulled over on the side of the road, ask if they’re okay and/or need any help.
I remember one time in 2018, my boyfriend and I were stuck on the side of the road with a blown radiator (didn’t know that at the time, though) and literally hundreds of cars just drove past us without any thought.
Honestly, it really made me mad. Of course, I knew they wouldn’t be able to do anything because we were just waiting for a tow truck. But the thought would have been nice!
There was 1 woman who asked us if were okay out of the *four hours* we were stuck there. ONE WOMAN.
If you see someone on the side of the road, at least ask if they’re okay. You don’t have to give up your entire day to help them with someone if you don’t want to or aren’t able to, but just checking in to see if there’s anything you can do is very, very meaningful.
Take it from me. I’ve been stuck on the side of the road more times than I care to admit. It’s nice to be asked.
And there you have it – 50 meaningful random acts of kindness you can try today!
WOOOOO look at you! You’re looking at 50 ideas for random acts of kindness. I’m thrilled that you are looking for ways to spread more light and love into the world. That makes me so happy.
Let’s get out into the world and do some good, shall we?