|The smallest gifts can make the biggest difference.|
Last month I had a great time participating in Kiki LaRue's photo a day challenge on Instagram. I've done photo a days before and they get you engaged with your Instapeeps. They are so much fun, but Kiki LaRue's had a twist, one of the days was a Random Acts of Kindness challenge. Do something for someone you don't know. Help a neighbor just because. Pay for the person behind you in the Starbucks drive thru. Tape a couple of dollars to a vending machine and pay for some one's afternoon snack. The possibilities are endless. I woke up that morning without a single idea of what I would do. So I headed over to my neighborhood Starbucks for inspiration.
Since it was after the morning rush, there were just a few patrons actually ordering their coffees. As I walked to the counter I spotted this year's holiday ornament. No one, and I mean no one, can resist a Red Cup. So I walked over to the counter and bought one, and then bought an additional five dollar gift card for my Secret Santa exchange partner. The Barista was so cheery and friendly, even though I knew she had been up since before day break. We chatted as she rang up my purchase, and while we were talking I casually mentioned that I wanted her to give that ornament to the person working the drive thru. I explained that I wanted the person at the drive thru window to give it to the next person that paid. So when they handed that person back their card or their change, I wanted them to also give them the ornament and tell them that a stranger wanted them to have it, just because. The Barista thought I was the coolest person, which was awesome at eight thirty-ish on a Tuesday when you are still in your pjs from last night, and went to school drop off in such an outfit. She went over and explained the situation to the drive thru gal, then returned and offered me a drink of my choice on the house. I declined, but I did step over to the side and watch as the drive thru gal gave the next paying customer a new Red Cup ornament. I could see the woman in the mini van's smile and the drive thru gals smile too.
It was kind of magical. It really was an amazing feeling. That person, just got a small surprise in an otherwise ordinary day. I started to think about that. What if she was having a terrible morning? What if her kids cried all morning, or they forgot their lunch? What if they hate their job, and their morning stop at Starbucks is the only bright spot in their day? What if they were late to work or school and this was just a little reminder that the day wasn't going to be so bad?
That random act of kindness felt really good in my heart. I'm not going to lie, I teared up a little and sort of wished I had the bank account that could afford to do something like that every day. But random acts of kindness don't have to be expensive, they don't have to be huge gifts or expensive cups of coffee. Random acts of kindness are designed to be just that: random and straight from the heart. One random act can change someone's day and your day too.
Because the smallest gifts of kindness can make the biggest difference.