GivingTuesday was created in 2012 as a simple idea. Promote a day that encourages people to do good. According to the organization’s website, GivingTuesday has grown into a global movement that inspires hundreds of millions of people to give, collaborate and celebrate generosity.
By making it their mission to bring attention to what each of us can do for others, the organization hopes to make a broader, global impact. And they’re the first to say that giving should be a way of life, and not just about opening your wallet during the holidays.
“GivingTuesday inspires people all around the world to embrace their power to drive progress around the causes they care about, not just on one day but throughout the year,” said Asha Curran, GivingTuesday’s CEO.
Although many people are driven to make a significant difference in the world, “embracing your power to drive progress” doesn’t always have to mean solving world hunger or finding a cure for breast cancer.
Actions that you think are small or inconsequential can actually reap huge rewards and impact lives. By giving kindness, everyone has something of value to give.
The Impact of Just Being Kind
When was the last time you saw someone – whether you knew them or not – who was apparently having a hard day, and tried to make their day a bit brighter and lighten their emotional burden?
In 2015, a group of Indiana students wanted to make this kind of difference and started a movement that pushed the very basic, but important message – Just Be Kind! Their goal is plain and simple, to remind people to be kind. “Our belief is that there is more goodness than not,” they say.
What can you do today to Just Be Kind? To spread goodness?
Here are some “kindness challenges” for this GivingTuesday that will undoubtedly make a difference in someone’s life:
- Make it a point to speak with at least 2 people whom you don’t know. Maybe you’re standing in line at the grocery – ask the cashier how he or she is doing. Listening to their answers with genuine interest could give them the boost they need to get through their shift.
- Have you been thinking about a friend or co-worker from years’ past? Take five minutes to send them a simple, “You were on my mind today and I hope you are doing well” message via email, social media, or (egad!) write them a note and send it via snail mail.
- When was the last time you thanked a parent for all they’ve done for you? A simple expression of gratitude and appreciation to our parents on a day other than Mother’s or Father’s Day can go a long way in filling their hearts.
- Tell a co-worker that you appreciate them for making your “home away from home” a more joyful place to be. Just expressing that you really enjoy working with them could make their week.
- Do something good for yourself. You likely are focused on doing for others most days. But today, do someone that fills your soul – work out, take an hour to just be still in your own thoughts or pick up the phone and call a friend.
You never know how a small act of kindness that says “I see you” or “you matter” may impact someone’s life or inspire them to pay it forward. Make it a point to share good will with others today – and every day.