Here’s an opportunity to try something new. To open a door in your world and see where it leads. What beautiful shift might occur in your outlook if you allowed yourself some freedom. Freedom to explore some new spiritual practices. Ones that appeal to you and offer hope and excitement and a sense of connection, perhaps to an inner part of you or perhaps to what you think of when you hear the word, ‘divine’.
Ready? I’m going to assume that you said ‘yes’, and I’ll keep going.
Although there are literally hundreds of directions we could go, let’s take just one step and see what happens.
Spiritual practices offer us every possible direction, so we can go inside or stay outside. For this exercise, let’s do both at the same time.
It will be fun. I promise.
So here it is…spend a little time and create an “intentional act of kindness plan” for the next seven days. I say, “intentional”, rather than the more common term of “random”, because I believe the creation of a plan IS “intentional”. You’re doing it “on purpose”, not with a specific idea of how it will turn out, but because you want to be present and somewhat purposeful.
I’m going to suggest that you start out with creating ideas. What acts of kindness come to your mind. Just let them pop into your head and write down a bunch of ideas that appeal to you. Once you have them captured, say each one out loud and see which ones your heart is drawn to. Make a list of 3-5 ideas (or more) that you want to put into practice during this week.
Once you have your list, imagine what you need in order to perform these acts of “intentional kindness”. Remember that they can cost you nothing or something. That part is entirely up to you.
How are you going to create some magic for someone else? Who will it be? When will you do these things? Plan it out a bit, but not too much. This isn’t intended to be a chore for you. It’s not another “to do” item, but rather an overflowing from the joy that lives inside of you, now and what is to come.
Okay, so now you have your plan.
One more thing. I’m going to suggest that you perform some acts of kindness anonymously and some where the person you’re doing this for knows that it is you. I’m very curious to know if that changes anything about the experience for you, so I’m going to ask you, if you are willing, to record your feelings about each one of the “intentional acts” you perform. That’s really a big part of this exercise.
That ought to be enough to get you started.
I would like to share with you that for my sixty-third birthday I performed 63 intentional acts of kindness. It was an amazing adventure. I learned so much about myself throughout the process, which actually took me all month to complete.
I was constantly surprised, amused and overjoyed by my experience. I found deep connections are always within reach, as long as I was willing to take one simple step.
I wish you well on this journey and would love to hear whatever you care to share.
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2 Replies to “Kindness”
Kindness is such a powerful tool. I’ve been so amazed how people respond to simple acts of kindness. Many times I feel frustrated when I perform an anonymous act of kindness because I have to trust the Universe that it’s a good thing even when the recipient doesn’t know.
I agree, kindness and our acting with kindness in our lives is very powerful, both for the giver and receiver. I also agree that performing anonymous acts adds a dimension and gives us an opportunity to stretch, one made more interesting because we don’t know the outcome. That was challenging for me too.