Have you ever stopped and asked yourself what REALLY makes you happy?
When I asked myself that question last month while I was taking The 31-Day Self-Love Challenge, my answers surprised me. But, what didn’t surprise me was that HELPING OTHERS was on the top of my list.
If helping others brings you joy and happiness as well, I would love to invite you to join us in the February Acts of Kindness Challenge. I promise you it will be a rewarding experience!!
How the Challenge Began
When I think of the month of February, the first thing that comes into my mind is Valentine’s Day. And when I think of Valentine’s Day, I am reminded of love. So, I thought it might be fun to challenge myself and my family to spread our love during the month by performing at least one act of kindness each day.
When I first suggested the idea to my family two years ago, they were all really excited. I’m sure their excitement probably had something to do with me mentioning a reward at the end if we were able to complete it, but the real reward turned out to be the experience in itself. We took the challenge again last year. This will be our third year, and we are all on board and excited about doing it again!
I invite you to join us and many others in spreading love and kindness all month! Feel free to make up your own rules, or follow our guidelines:
Act of Kindness Challenge Guidelines:
- Prepare. Print out this February 2016 Acts of Kindness Log for each member of your family. Use it to record your acts of kindness throughout the month. Also keep track of the acts of kindness performed toward you each day. You might be surprised to actually see how many nice things people do for each other each day. 🙂 We put ours on the refrigerator so it stays in view and is easy to remember.
- Identify a Reward to keep You Motivated. If you are taking the challenge with others, take a vote to see how you want to reward yourselves once you have completed the challenge! In the past, we have rewarded ourselves by going out to dinner together as a family (something we usually only reserve for birthdays or special occasions.) Come up with something that works for you and your family and that will motivate you to complete the challenge. Don’t skip this step. This is the step that keeps my kids motivated to keep going throughout the challenge.
- Spread your love! Each day in February, perform at least one act of kindness and write it down on the log. Try to come up with something different each day. My definition of an Act of Kindness is: any action you take to brighten someone’s day without expecting anything in return. Also, write down any acts of kindness others performed toward you.
- Encourage each other and keep each other accountable. Each day, share your ideas with your family members or loved ones who are also participating in the challenge. Talk about the acts of kindness you performed. Also, feel free to share your ideas and inspiration in our February Acts of Kindness Challenge Facebook group so we can continue to support and encourage each other and keep each other accountable.
- When the month is over, share what you learned from the experience. Feel free to share your stories with us as well in the February Acts of Kindness Challenge Facebook group.
- REWARD YOURSELF!! Don’t skip this step, either. For many of us, the real reward is the experience in itself, but make sure to recognize your accomplishment and follow through on the reward you set in step 2.
I invite you to join us in this challenge and spread your love. It only takes a small act to make a big impact. Let’s make a difference together! “Like” the Facebook page February Acts of Kindness Challenge for inspirational stories and quotes each day, or join the Facebook support group at February Acts of Kindness Challenge to share your ideas and inspiration. 🙂
Feel free to do more than one Act of Kindness a day. Don’t be afraid to write them all down. You may already do several acts of kindness each day without even realizing it. The point here is to become aware of all the good things you already do and realize the impact it has on others. You may also want to try to take it a step further and do some things you normally wouldn’t do. When we make a small effort to brighten someone’s day out of love (not obligation), we are rewarded with happiness. Anything done out of obligation is not an act of love and will only cause you to feel resentment. It doesn’t matter whether your acts of kindness are random or intentional, but to honor your own self-care, please make sure they are performed out of love.
As you perform more acts of kindness, you may also notice yourself becoming the recipient of more acts of kindness. Learn to accept these gifts with gratitude. Many times it is more challenging for us to receive than it is to give. We may resist acts of kindness toward us because we may feel like we will owe the other person, but when you let people do nice things for you, you are actually giving them a gift. Learning how to let others help you might be just what you need to learn from this challenge…I know from previous years it was exactly what I needed to learn.
If you run out of ideas at any point during the challenge, this Random Acts of Kindness generator is fantastic!
Check out this link for some great Random Acts of Kindness ideas!
“Like” the Facebook Page The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation.
Check out the inspiring movie, The Letter Writer. It is a great reminder of the impact our actions have on others, and the difference one act of kindness can make. If you have some suggestions for more inspiring movies about kindness, please let me know about them in the comments below.
Random Acts of Kindness week is a 7-day celebration of kindness. This year it falls on February 14-20, 2016!
Check out this inspiring 5 minute video to see how one small act of kindness can make a big impact.
Do YOU have any kindness ideas, quotes, videos, or inspiration you would like to share? Feel free to leave them in a comment below or share them on the February Acts of Kindness Challenge Facebook support group. Thank you! 🙂