101 random acts of kindnessA while ago I wrote about my revelation that life wasn’t about being happy all the time… it’s about noticing and savouring the little moments of joy. Something else I’ve come to realise is that probably 99% of my moments of joy are caused by someone else being happy. Tickling my children and watching them laughing uncontrollably. Being surrounded by my wonderful family. Laughing about something silly with my work friend. So that’s my conclusion… if you want to be happy, make someone else happy.

One way we can consciously create moments of joy each day is through spreading kindness. The dictionary defines kindness as:

“The quality of being friendly, generous and considerate”

Kindness comes from the heart, when you give to others without expecting anything in return. Kindness is the act of looking at the needs of others and filling those needs in ways that empower the receiver.

If every one of us chose to be kind to all others in this moment, can you imagine the shift that would happen in the world? If we all were to choose kindness in this moment, the impact would be felt throughout the universe.

While there are tons of little things we can do every day (like hold the door or smile at a stranger), there are other things we can do that may have never crossed our mind.

So here’s my carefully and lovingly curated list of 101 acts of kindness.

1 / Put change in a vending machine
2 / Write a thank you note for your postman
3 / Leave a letter in a library book
4 / Leave happy notes around town
5 / Compliment someone every day
6 / Hold the door open for someone
7 / Bake a cake for a neighbour
8 / Check in on an elderly neighbour
9 / Buy a coffee for a stranger
10 / Tell a manager how good your service was at a cafe or restaurant
11 / Give a lottery ticket to a stranger
12 / Call a friend you haven’t seen in a while to say hello
13 / Tell someone how much you love them
14 / Make a get well card for someone
15 / Take care of someone’s pet while they’re away
16 / Send dessert to another family at a restaurant
17 / Collect money or items for your favorite charity
18 / Ask for donations instead of birthday gifts
19 / Make a homemade gift for someone
20 / Smile at everybody. It’s contagious!
21 / Tweet or Facebook message a genuine compliment to three people right now
22 / Bring treats to work for no reason
23 / If you notice a child being well-behaved, compliment them and their parents
24 / When everyone around you is gossiping about someone, be the one to comment with something nice
25 / Cook a meal or do a load of laundry for a friend who just had a baby or is going through a difficult time
26 / Offer a homeless person your leftovers bag from the restaurant
27 / Each time you get a new piece of clothing, donate an old one to the charity shop
28 / Listen intently. Don’t interrupt when someone else is speaking
29 / Smile at someone on the street, just because
30 / Let someone into your lane. They’re probably in a rush just like you
31 / Talk to the new person at work and ask them about themselves
32 / Leave your newspaper or magazine behind for someone else to read at the coffeeshop, doctors or on public transport
33 / Help a mother with her pram
34 / Let the person behind you at the supermarket checkout with one or two items go ahead of you
35 / Write someone a letter. Like a real letter, on paper. And post it!
36 / Give away stuff for free on freecycle
37 / Be the person who puts a tip in the tip jar at the coffeeshop
38 / When you go somewhere to get or do something, ask the people around you if you can pick up anything they need
39 / Give someone a hug
40 / Call your grandparents. Call them now!
41 / Take the time to leave a nice comment on a blog you enjoyed
42 / Put sticky notes with positive slogans on the mirrors in ladies room
43 / Don’t give into road rage. Give up a parking spot or let someone pass in front of you on the road
44 / Relay an overheard compliment
45 / Bring your partner coffee in bed tomorrow
46 / Try to make sure every person in a group conversation feels included
47 / Stop to talk to a homeless person
48 / Answer that email you’ve been avoiding
49 / Send anonymous flowers to a friend or relative
50 / Write a nice comment on your friends facebook page

101 random acts of kindness

51 / Offer to house sit for a friend while they’re on holiday
52 / Babysit for a parent friend for free
53 / Adopt a rescue animal
54 / Compliment someone in front of others
55 / Write your partner a list of things you love about them
56 / Talk to someone at work who you haven’t talked to before
57 / Frame your friend’s favorite lyric or quote and give it to them with a nice note
58 / Send dessert to another table
59 / Text someone just to say good morning or good night
60 / Help your elderly neighbour take out their bins or mow their lawn
61 / Give up your seat to someone (anyone!) on public transport
62 / Tell your siblings how much you appreciate them
63 / If you’re a good photographer, take photos of your friends and make them into a digital album
64 / Smile when you feel like scowling
65 / Keep an extra umbrella at work and let someone borrow it on their way home if there’s a sudden downpour
66 / Make two lunches and give one away
67 / Help someone struggling with heavy bags
68 / Take all your change to Coinstar and donate your collection to charity
69 / Do the dishes even if it’s not your turn
70 / Every night before you go to bed, think of three things you’re grateful for
71 / Make plans with that person you’ve been putting off seeing
72 / Offer to return a shopping trolley to the supermarket for someone loading groceries in their car
73 / When you hear that negative, discouraging voice in your head, remember to forgive yourself — you deserve kindness too!
74 / Shovel the snow off a neighbour’s drive or path
75 / Leave a review for a restaurant/cafe/hotel you’ve enjoyed
76 / Leave a book you’ve finished on public transport
77 / Bake a cake or cupcakes for someone’s birthday
78 / Give blankets or a coat to a homeless person
79 / Donate blood
80 / Teach and remind your children to be kind, respectful, and considerate
81 / Gather any toys or clothes your children have outgrown and take threm to the charity shop together
82 / Treat a friend to the cinema, a concert, festival, etc
83 / Volunteer to be the designated driver and make sure your friends get home safely
84 / Be nice to someone you don’t necessarily like
85 / Pay for the person behind you in the drive-thru
86 / Write a note and put it in your child’s lunchbox
87 / Buy an extra cup of coffee in the morning and give it to a colleague
88 / Give an umbrella to a homeless person
89 / Offer a ride to someone who doesn’t have a car
90 / Collect boxes for someone who is moving house
91 / At the supermarket, buy something extra to donate to a food bank
92 / Send paper thank you notes for gifts you receive
93 / After a party, wash the dishes for your host
94 / Leave a thank you note for your window cleaner
95 / Tidy up the staff kitchen at your office
96 / Talk to the checkout person at the shop about their day
97 / Praise someone at work for doing a good job
98 / Have good manners. Say ‘please’, ‘thank you’, ‘you’re welcome’, and ‘excuse me’
99 / Give up complaining for 21 days
100 / Throw away your rubbish and someone else’s, after a movie, picnic or visit to a park
101 / Give your random acts of kindness ideas to a friend

If you are feeling inspired I encourage you to try an Act of Kindness, or tell me in the comments below what Acts of Kindness you have spread today.

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turn around a bad day with this powerful mantraBad days. We all have them.  The alarm didn’t go off, the kids are playing up and the cat’s thrown up in the kitchen. The day has only just started and already we want to chalk it up as a bad day. Or we might be having a great day and feeling really positive and motivated. Then out of the blue the car breaks down or we’re leave our wallet at home and bam! it’s instantly turned into a bad day.

I’ve had a couple of those days recently. This week both my dishwasher and fridge have stopped working. Yesterday I was looking after my nieces and all the kids were fighting, we had a headlice scare (thankfully we’re all nit-free!), my daughter banged her head and had a bump the size of an egg and to top it off my youngest niece fell out of our tree and broke her elbow! What a truly horrendous day. I know they’re not massive problems compared to what a lot of people are going through, but we’re all affected in different ways.

No matter how in touch and in control of our emotions we are, everyday obstacles and challenges can easily knock us for six. It would undoubtedly be easier to write the day off as a bad one and just try again tomorrow and hope for better results. However, now when I have a bad day, I have enough tools at my disposal to help me out of a downward spiral. So instead of giving up on the rest of the day, why not stop negativity in its tracks with this amazingly powerful mantra.

Stop, take a deep breath and say:

“SOFTEN [your name]”

Soften my body – my shoulders, my neck, my clenched jaw, my belly muscles

Soften my words – harsh words said in the heat of the moment, that I don’t really mean

Soften my heart – listen to my heart and refill it with love and kindness

Soften my thoughts – thoughts of fear, of not being good enough, of not being in control

Soften my judgement – of myself and of others

turn around a bad day with this powerful mantra

Soften is such a comforting, heart-warming word. As I say it I visualise being wrapped in a big, warm, soft blanket of love that dissolves away what I was mad/stressed/upset about.

Softening helps me to let go of stress and negativity and replace it with love and compassion. It reminds me that nothing is permanent. Whatever has happened to make me feel like I’m having a bad day, can disappear as easily as it arrived. I sometimes need to repeat this powerful mantra several times a day… or more if it’s a particularly stressful day. It brings me back to the present moment and can turn my bad day into a great one.

How do you turn around a bad day?

 

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dalai lama quotesNo one can argue with the Dalai Lama when it comes to words of wisdom. I’ve always admired him for the fact that he radiates so much happiness, compassion and tolerance. His quotes convey a mixture of incredible insight, sound life advice and also a little humour. I love his ability to convey his message so it makes sense to people all over he world no matter what culture or traditions they may hold. So I’ve hand picked 20 Dalai Lama quotes that have inspired me to think differently about life.

 

“Give the ones you love wings to fly, roots to come back, and reasons to stay.”

 

“Once a year go someplace you’ve never been before.”

 

“Happiness is not something ready-made. It comes from your own actions.”

 

“If you think you are too small to make a diference, try sleeping with a mosquito in the room.”

 

“Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.”

 

“There are only two days in the year when nothing can be done. One is called yesterday and the other is called tomorrow, so today is the right day to love, believe, do and mostly live.”

 

“Remember that sometimes not getting what you want, is a wonderful stroke of luck.”

 

“Do not let the behaviour of others, destroy your inner peace.”

 

“If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion.”

 

“Every day think as you wake up, today I am fortunate to be alive, I have a precious human life, I am not going to waste it.”

 

“The planet does not need more successful people. The planet needs more peacemakers, healers, restorers, storytellers and lovers of all kinds.”

 

“No material object, however beautiful, can make us feel loved.”

 

“It is more useful to be aware of a single shortcoming in ourselves, than it is to be aware of a thousand in somebody else.”

 

“When you think everything is someone elses fault then you will suffer. When you realise that everything springs from yourself, you will learn both peace and joy.”

 

“Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help them, a least don’t hurt them.”

 

“When you talk you are only repeating what you already know. But if you listen, you may learn something new.”

 

“If it can be solved, there’s no need to worry, and if it can’t be solved, worry is of no use.”

 

“When we feel love and kindness toward others, it not only makes others feel loved and cared for, but it helps us also to develop inner happiness and peace.”

 

“Follow the 3 R’s. Respect for self, respect for others and responsibility for all your actions.”

 

“People take different roads seeking fulfilment and happiness, just because they’re not on your road, doesn’t mean they’ve gotten lost.”

 

And as a bonus take a look at the quote to the right in the sidebar! It’s there because it’s my favourite quote of all time. It’s there as a reminder to me and everyone that visits my blog of our purpose in life.

What’s your favourite Dalai Lama quote? Feel free to leave me a comment with a quote of your own if I haven’t listed it here.

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how to set daily intentionsIntentions are goals that help guide us through the day or something we want to accomplish. We set and reaffirm our intentions to keep us moving in the direction we truly mean to go. If you read my post about my simple 5 step morning ritual, you’ll have seen that I like to set 3 daily intentions. I thought I’d share a bit more about how I choose my intentions each day and my super easy way of setting them.

The process I use for setting my intentions has evolved over the past year. When I first started journalling last year, I used the Daily Greatness Journal. It’s a fantastic journal if you’re looking for something pretty structured as it’s split into two parts with certain sections to complete each day. First you complete one part in the morning like list things you’re grateful for, set your inspired actions, write some affirmations. Then complete the second part at the end of the day where you answer questions like what has challenged you? what was interesting about today? The ‘inspired actions’ are just another name for daily intentions so I got used to choosing 3 things to focus each day. After about 6 months I wanted something more flexible so I switched to a notebook journal. I wanted to continue setting my daily intentions plus I also write out my daily mantra and 3 things I’m grateful for.

How I set my daily intentions

Ok let’s look at how I choose my daily intentions. After my 5 minute morning meditation and writing my gratitude list, I start by thinking of how I’d like to feel throughout the coming day. For me it’s usually ‘calm’ or ‘peaceful’ but just choose any feeling you wish for the day. With the feeling in mind, now choose your intentions. You can randomly pick 1 – 3 things to focus on or accomplish that day but I like to choose 3 intentions for 3 different areas of my life so I’m not focussing on just one area that day. You’ll get the idea when you read on!

1 Soul intention

This intention is about nourishing your mind and soul, it’s anything that will help you shine brighter and be a better version of you. So think of things like reading positive affirmations, reading a particular self help book or being more mindful. You could also choose to focus on a habit you’re trying to break or improve, like be a better listener, limit your screen time or be a calmer driver. For this intention I might also choose something like ‘choose love in everything I do’ or ‘live in the present moment’.

2 Self-care intention

We know how super important it is to look after ourselves and a little bit of self-care each day is a great way of keeping our energy and happiness levels topped up. Choose something that will make you feel calm and centred, a little treat just for you. You could choose something like reading a book you love, have a bubble bath, go for a run/walk/do yoga. If you’re stuck for self care ideas have a look at my post ‘25 Ways to Practice Self-Care‘.

3 Practical intention

This is something like a household task that you want to complete that day, eg hoovering, paying a bill, washing the car or grocery shopping. As we go through our day, we notice jobs that need doing and it’s easy to get overwhelmed by a huge to-do list. I personally don’t do to-do lists (they stress me out!) but I know lots of people love them. I’m not a fan of household chores either but I’m afraid some things just have to be done! So I just pick one task then I don’t feel overwhelmed by a great big list and I enjoy feeling the achievement of getting something done. If there’s anything else it can wait for another day!

Of course you can be as flexible as you want – if you just feel like doing one intention that day, just do one. Consistency is the key, after time it will become habitual and a natural part of your morning ritual. Don’t forget to write them in your journal to affirm your intentions. If you like, you could put a reminder of your daily intentions in your phone and set an alarm to go off a couple of times during the day to re-focus you.

At the end of the day, don’t beat yourself up if you don’t ‘complete’ all of your intentions. I have lots of days when I don’t do them all or none at all! It’s no big deal, I just move on to the next day, after all it’s a new start and a chance to have another go at them or choose a whole new set of intentions. And if you do well with your intentions, feel free to celebrate them and give yourself a big high five!

Do you set daily intentions? How do you choose them each day?

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My monthly goals marchI’m all about taking baby steps when it comes to making changes and working on my self improvement. I really believe that even the tiniest changes add up to something big when you look at the overall picture. Plus they say that practicing something new for 30 days creates a lasting habit right?! For about a year I’ve been setting myself small monthly goals, nothing major, just little changes that I want to work towards. I’m the queen of procrastination so to make me accountable I thought I’d share my monthly goals with you…

1. Work on my Life Coaching and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy courses. I signed up for these two home-study courses last September but haven’t got very far with my studying yet. I want to complete them both this year so really need to get a move on and get some assessments finished.

2. Spend less time on my mobile and more time focussing on my loved ones. I’m the first to admit I spend too much time on my mobile. I read a lot of articles and blogs about self improvement and play games too. I’m going to set myself a target of only going on my phone between 5.30-6.30pm every day and also no phone/tablet/laptop after 9.30pm.

3. Meditate more. I’ve kind of got out of the habit the past few months and haven’t been very consistant. I really find meditation so beneficial for lowering my stress levels and raising my calmness levels so I need to get back to being consistant and meditate for 20 minutes every. single. day!

I’ll do a little update next month on how I’ve done with my goals.

Do you set yourself monthly goals? I’d love to hear your goals for the month?

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