Recap: My Random Acts Of Kindness Challenge

First Challenge:
10 Days Of Random Acts Of Kindness

Random Acts Of Kindness

ALRIGHT! I did it! I made it through my first challenge – and that really was a challenging challenge at that! I could have done any little thing – Random Acts of suggested that drinking more water would be a random act of kindness. Sorry, I don’t think so. That totally doesn’t count. So since I wanted to do something meaningful, it actually took some work.

It’s difficult to make time every day to do something meaningful that requires preparation and/or going out of your way. But I must say that it was worth it. I felt like a better person because of it. My most meaningful experience was helping the homeless girl. I’ve been going back to find her again, but I never saw her there again. I wish I would.

Well, if anyone cares to read, here is my complete challenge. On my Challenge tab, it will be replaced by my next challenge. Here, it will live forever. I want to repeat this challenge on of these days. Maybe you want to join me then! Thanks for caring!

Day 10
Saturday, March 30: Plant a pizza garden with Christopher Lots of compliments! 🙂

Well, my last day was difficult to handle in terms of random acts of kindness since Christopher wanted to do absolutely nothing that involved leaving the house. No pizza garden, no baking Easter bread, Nothing. Well, I guess that in itself was a random act of kindness because it was a beautiful day and I really wanted to make Easter bread! As I am writing this on theoretical Day 11, I used today to pay compliments to all women that I talked to today (the day of the Easter Sunday Brunch at the Phoenix Club). Sincere ones!

As this challenge is over, I must say making a conscience choice to do a random act of kindness each day that is really meaningful and you wouldn’t do anyway, it quite a difficult task! I noticed how I am naturally kind, though, because “normal acts” I just consider normal, others consider to be a “random act” of kindness. Well, it’s all in the perspective. All in all, I grew in kindness during these short 10 days. I want to repeat this challenge again one day.

Day 9
Friday, March 29: Give out Chocolate Easter Eggs to children I was quiet.

Today, I didn’t give away chocolate Easter eggs to any kids (except for my son) because I already did that yesterday. Does saying nothing when mad count as a random act of kindness? The person you didn’t say it to will never know. But I think it counts. God knows. I know. There. Christopher and I went to the beach today right by our house. We have the dog beach right there, separated from the regular beach by big orange cones.

We sat a few feet over from the cones – I didn’t want to get too close to the dog territory for obvious reasons. As we were playing in the sand, a man with his dog kept walking around our area – clearly outside of the dog area, never entering the dog area. Fine, I thought, whatever, it’s ONE dog. But when the dog started peeing in the sand just a bit over from us, it was REALLY difficult not to ask the owner if he was blind. But I didn’t. Kindness? Maybe, because my words wouldn’t have been pretty. You’re welcome, man I don’t know and will hopefully never see again :)

Day 8
Thursday, March 28: Give $1 to a homeless person Give out chocolate Easter eggs to children

I switched days, I suppose. I filled those plastic eggs with little chocolate eggs and gave them to my boss’s kids. You can’t really give random kids anything anymore. Their parents will just throw it out because everyone is paranoid these days about getting poisoned. So I chose my boss’s kids since they were around and she trusts me not to poison her kids. I figured that was a save AND nice choice. The kids said thank you. Happy Easter!

Day 7
Wednesday, March 27: Pay a compliment to everyone I talk to Ad-hoc mentored a couple of students for about an hour

Well, let’s face it: Complimenting everyone you talk to really isn’t an act of kindness in this country… it’s really just small talk. So, I decided, yet again, to do something really helpful. I went to a PRSA (Public Relations Society of America) mixer last night, for young professionals. Because it was for young professionals, current students were invited and the place was overrun with them. Good for them, I suppose, they’re doing the right thing. I must say, though, they’re all still learning. Barely anyone asked me for a card (oh well, they’ll learn).

There was one girl, though, later joined by a guy, who asked me really good questions and didn’t do the whole I’ll-be-fake-happy-and-then-ask-you-for-a-job thing. And because she was working the networking scene right (just out of intuition), I decided that it was worth mentoring her (and then the guy too) for about 45 minutes (at least!). And I told them all what I had learned about networking, what exactly to do to get that job without having to ask for it and all that good stuff. Down to the detail of what to do with their class project and what professor to take next (they go to the school I graduated from). Of course I highly recommended my former PR professor turned mentor. If you ever run into Dennis Gaschen, tell him I said hi. I call him my substitute dad because he’s so awesome!

So I hope what I told those students stuck and they’ll really implement it. Glad I could help them. I wish someone had made the effort to drive home those points to me.

Day 6
Tuesday, March 26: Give an inspirational quote to everyone at work I failed.

I am sorry to say that today, I had no time for a planned random act of kindness. In an attempt to have Good Friday off, but still get paid for a full week, I am pre-working hours and I was literally at work until I went to bed. Same on Monday. Little time for anything else elaborate. So, no coworkers got inspirational quotes. BUT I DID tell me boss, together with one of my coworkers, that we are really in our dream jobs. We love our work here and it is the perfect job with the perfect fit for us. Seeing the smile on her face about it was priceless. There she was, working so hard to build her own agency, and the reward she gets is to be told by her employees that they were hired into their dream job. Maybe that’s better than giving out any quotes to anyone. Don’t you think?

Day 5
Monday, March 25: Collect shopping carts at my local Trader Joe’s and bring them back to their holding place  Bring lunch to work or everyone

As previously discussed, my plans may change as opportunities present themselves. I guess I am sort of trading today with tomorrow. Potato pancakes aren’t inspirational quotes, admittedly, but hey, they’re free food! Well, yesterday, I took those 2 gallons of potato pancake batter with me. And then I stood in the kitchen for 2 hours making pancakes. And brought them to work today for everyone. I brought free lunch to work. Nuff said.

Day 4
Sunday, March 24: Help at the Phoenix Club’s Easter EGGstravaganza and stay to clean up. But really help out a poor homeless young lady.

My challenge today was to help in the German Potato Pancake booth and to stay all the way to clean up. But honestly, while volunteering is a chore to most, it’s really just fun for me. I love volunteering for my clubs. So that way, it’s still a random act of kindness, I would assume, but it’s really not so random. And yes, it’s kind, but for ME, it’s really just done because I love it either way.

My real act of kindness came out of it, though. We had a lot of potato pancake batter left over and they were just going to throw it away. I insisted that we don’t throw it away; I will find someone who wants them. A charity, a food bank, the homeless on my way home. So we made another batch under the condition that I would find people to give them to. Turns out almost all of them were actually sold then and I went home with just 4 or 5 pancakes and some apple sauce. (I also went home with 1-2 gallons of the left over batter, but that’s a different story).

On my way home, I had to stop for gas and pulled off the freeway to get to Costco. As I was driving in to the parking lot, there was a young lady standing at the corner of the driveway. Really pretty. Homeless and begging. It affected me so much, I will have a separate blog post about it. For today, I decided that I was – for the first time ever – going to roll down my window and hand her those potato pancakes and apple sauce. I really wanted to talk to her, but a 30 second red light is, of course, no time to talk about anything. She was thankful for the food. Now THIS was a true random act of kindness. Watch for a post coming about this – because I have A LOT more to say about this poor girl.

Day 3
Saturday, March 23: Hang out with a friend I don’t see often enough

Well, one thing I can tell you for sure: My random act of kindness today did NOT involve Starbucks! The plan was to hang out with a friend I don’t see often enough. That really applies to ALL of my friends. But I wanted to make sure to stay friends with my friend who also currently double-serves as my intern. Because that can be quite a sticky situation, I want to make sure we remain FRIENDS and can hang out without ever talking about work. And it worked! I even told her that: That I need us to stay friends! So my random act of kindness was accomplished.

I wanted to take it a step further and use the 2 movies tickets I had bought at Costco a while ago to take her to see Identity Thief. I hear it’s really funny. But she didn’t have time. So, as I got home, I was in quite a good mood after my lunch experience. And especially after taking a walk by the beach, I was in such a good mood that I just asked my room mate if he wanted to go to the movies instead (yes, I currently have a male room mate and that’s a very long story. Maybe I’ll share it one of these days). Unfortunately, he already had dinner plans, and I don’t feel like going by myself. So I remain movie-less for today. But it’s the thought that counts, right? And I was trying a lot today. So I made it through another day of random acts of kindness. On to tomorrow!

Day 2
Friday, March 22: Give a thank you note to Christopher’s teacher just because  More Starbucks

Well, my plan had to change because Christopher was sick and we never went to school at all. And well, I can see a pattern emerging with my random acts of kindness. I must stop it now. It’ll get too expensive! Of course, my random act today involves Starbucks again. Well, my first kindness act really was to patiently sit next to Christopher on the couch for two entire hours and watch him play Cut the Rope on the iPad.

Then, his grandma sat with us and her arm was really hurting her. So I wanted to offer making dinner for her. But she is so particular that I didn’t think that would be a good choice at this point. So instead, Christopher and I went out and brought her back a Starbucks latte, just like she likes it. And Christopher got a kid’s coffee (what we call it), so that made him happy, too.

I was going to bring a drink to his dad as a late Single Parents Appreciation Day present, but I didn’t think he’d be home from work yet. Well, when we got back to the house, his car was in the driveway. So I decided to pass on my drink to him.

So… even though all my acts of kindness today involved Starbucks and no notes to any teachers, I think I did well. Three people happy with one trip to Starbucks. Worth the investment. I promise my Starbucks acts of kindness will end!

Day 1
Thursday, March 21: Give a present to my boss

Well, I am off to a great start! I bought my boss a Starbucks gift card and wrote a nice note to accompany it. I told her I loved working at her agency (and I really do!). That’s always nice to hear… means you’re doing something right. To buy the Starbucks gift card, I parked in a metered spot right in front of the store. I decided that I didn’t have to put money in the meter for the 2 minutes I’d be inside. I mean, come on, what are the odds of getting a ticket! So then, there was a line inside and I was thinking: Man, if I get a ticket, this will be a blog post with the title “No good deed goes unpunished!” But luckily, no ticket. A couple of hours later, my room mate sends me a text and says: “I just saved someone from getting a ticket! That was MY random act of kindness for today.” And I was thinking: Hm, I wonder if that was ME! haha

Well, my boss was very happy. That was unexpected. As it should be :) So later today, my intern and I had to drive somewhere and I had no idea where I was going. In order to not miss the parking lot I had to turn into, I turned left – with no traffic coming my way – not using the signal. (Who does when there is no one on the street!). A pretty big man, who was just pulling away from the curb got so upset at me not setting my signal that he followed me into the parking lot, to roll down his window and yell at me!! Unbelievable! Instead of telling him that it is quite inappropriate to follow 2 ladies into a parking lot to yell at them (it might, in fact, cause some people to call 911),  I decided to apologize for not setting my signal and let him be. I think that absolutely counts as yet another random act of kindness! I get double points today!


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