Tag Archives: kindness

Kindness to a stranger

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On the page “Let`s change the world” you find our idea for a better world. We have now created a group where I will post information about a competition we will have, and where I will publish ideas for acts of kindness we all can do. You will also find a lot of inspirations and ideas here on the blog. For those who don`t know what kindness to a stranger mean, I`ll repost the idea:

 

Project: Kindness to a stranger

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Give a smile to a stranger, and you might have made the world a little better  ”validation project”

Project kindness to a stranger

To introduce the idea, I will ask everyone to watch this short movie first. Even if it takes 18 minutes, and afterwards you will feel good.

We go about our everyday lives wanting things to always be getting better. We hope that our work makes a difference and those who came before us are proud and we wish for our children to have more than what we were given. As anyone knows who has heard Martin Luther King Jr.’s famous speech—delivered fifty years ago this August~ dreams are at the center of any effort to make things better. And today we have something with more power than we might realize: The internet. It’s not without reason that China and North-Korea tried to keep their inhabitants away from news.The media also have immense power, and even if some might argue that they focus on the wrong things, a lot of journalist really want to make the world a better place. Combine the knowledge, motivation the internet and the media and you have a wonderful recipe: People who actually do something.

http://ow.ly/nk7U1

So, by now you might be thinking: Yeah, sure, but what can I DO?

If you have watched the movie, you have seen the immense effect some words can have. When we have the possibility to help, by little effort, we do it. For example, most people help the world by sorting our paper and throw it in a separate garbage bin, thereby saving the rainforest. So, what about potentially making somebody happy by smiling a little?

trueResearch shows that our mirror-neurons respond automatically by creating a smile on your own lips. This means that smiling AT someone, actually MAKE them happier. Research also shows that being happy yourself, gives you more energy to be there for others. So, like in the video, I would challenge the readers of this blog to do JUST one nice thing for somebody else (preferably a stranger, because that would have the biggest impact) the next week.

When you have done that, write WHAT you did, and if you want, leave your email at the end. This will be like signing a petition for releasing a political prisoners. For every one of you who does that, you might have made the world just a little better. This is what your story means: You are signing a petition for a better world

 

 

The group can be found here (you must have google + to join). I will start to interview people next week, and I will then focus on good things they`ve done, or good things others have done to them. The interviews will be posted on the group:

https://plus.google.com/u/0/communities/104282293763031936119

twitter: @Freepsychology

Facebook page (have you liked it yet?): https://www.facebook.com/freepsychology

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Call To Action

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Andre Johnson @ ToysRUs

Andre Johnson @ ToysRUs

I read today about how Andre Johnson, the Houston Texan wide received, # 80, donated over $17,000 to under-privileged children this Christmas and provided them with an 80 second all-out shopping spree in which they could keep all the toys and electronic ‘goodies’ they could load into their carts.

The video is available to view on YouTube, and I would provide the link here, but I’m not fully looking to advocate the views of the man who made this available through video. There are however, some extremely necessary points that I feel need to be made. And, what better place to make them!

Where are the reporters? Where are the news casters? When we have professional athletes who give back and do things to help others, why are they not as dedicated to making sure we all hear about this the same way they are if there were some scandal that involved a sports figure? Why is this not ‘newsworthy’ in their eyes, or at least as much so as some horrible story would be?

Have we really gotten so negative as a society that there are not enough voices speaking out in favor of kindness and goodness as evil and destruction? Are there really less advertising dollars available for stories where people help each other than for those in which people do hurtful and awful things to each other?

As we close the book on this year and get ready to march forward into 2014, isn’t there something we can do to make a positive change in the way our society seems to be heading? Don’t enough of us care to?

When someone like Andre Johnson does the type of things he is doing, we should insist that these stories are not only covered on national news, but that they are featured as headline stories there. There should be awards and incentives for the reporters and newscasters who provide viewers with the most positive and most uplifting stories of the day in the news.

In Focus

In Focus

Doesn’t it hold true for them too, that we tend to notice more of what we focus our minds on? I know we have all experienced it – the phenomenon of mysteriously noticing so many more of the make and model of the car on the road that just happens to be the same as the one we just purchased!

If that is true, then doesn’t it stand to reason when newscasters and reporters look for uplifting stories of kindness and goodness, they will find more of them? YOU BET IT DOES! And the way we can help make it happen is by writing to our favorite television and radio stations and letting them know that we, their listening and viewing audience, the people that their sponsors pay huge money to advertise in order to convince to purchase their products, want to see more reports of kindness and positive things happening.

I am quite certain if we let them know in mass that their listeners and viewers will decrease significantly unless they increase the amount of positive events broadcasted, that we will miraculously find that Andre Johnson is not alone.

I am going out on a limb here by predicting that we would find many more people all over the world are doing kind things and helpful things that are at least as newsworthy as some political figure embezzling funds or having another affair.

Typing an Email

Typing an Email

It wouldn’t take much. Just a quick email or phone call to first a local broadcast to make them aware of the movement and then one more call or email to your favorite major network. How wonderful it would be to be apart of something that permitted our voices to be heard.

Let me know if you need help getting the necessary email or phone number and I will help get you the information. Just email me the name and call letters of the broadcasts of your choice and I will send you the details you need.

I can’t think of a better way to head into the new year!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Judy is a licensed clinical social worker and has worked extensively as a counselor with children, adolescents, couples and families. Judy’s professional experience in the mental health field along with her love of writing, provide insight into real-life experiences and relationships. Her fresh voice and down-to-earth approach to living a happier, more meaningful life are easy to understand and just as easy to start implementing right away for positive results!

Let it Begin with ME

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The Kindness Wave

The Kindness Wave

I will admit it. I am a bit of a Dunkin Diva. Usually I go for the flavored coffees but lately I’ve been pretty inclined to order regular (most of the time decaf,) but all that is not the point I’m looking to make.

I was in line today, digging through my bag for change after placing my order…I pull up to the window, money stuffed into my free hand as I leaned over to pay the young man handing me my coffee and I hear him say “oh, that’s okay, the people who were ahead of you paid for your order.”

I rattled my head, trying to make sense of what he said, knowing that I didn’t have a clue who they were, thinking maybe I cut off people who were in their party of drive-through drinkers. That must be it, I reasoned; they intended to pay for the car behind me that I must have inadvertently cut off when I entered the line of cars placing their late and coffee orders.

“Are you sure,” I asked the smiling young man waving me through and already looking toward the customer behind me. “I don’t even know those people. They were strangers.”

“Yeah,” the young many agreed, “they said they didn’t’ know you and you would be surprised.”

Kindness

Kindness

I motored out of the Dunkin Parking lot recapping what just occurred, amazed at the unselfishness of the act these people just performed. I know it was only coffee, but it is not something I see everyday. And I get the Christmas connection. I know it is most likely about passing on the Christmas spirit which is a wonderful thing. To randomly do something kind for someone can impact that person’s feelings about the day and about people kind. It can linger for a while, it can be powerful enough to be passed on to someone else. It is a great thing.

So here’s my wish for this Christmas…my wish is that we don’t only pass on the loving message of the holidays because it is holiday time…we reach our hand out to others anytime, any day, anywhere. For every needless act of violence and destruction we hear about, we should combat it at least tenfold with random acts of kindness and consideration.

Take it on yourself to be the starting place of the movement for goodness every day of the year. It doesn’t have to be an act that costs money if money is tight; it is just the kindness of offering a hand, or letting someone go ahead of you rather than honking your horn at them in anger.

Teaching Kindness to Children

Teaching Kindness to Children

Let us all pledge to teach our children that for every single hurtful act our society produces, there are swarms more offering love and kindness. Let is start with us, each one of us, today.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Judy is a licensed clinical social worker and has worked extensively as a counselor with children, adolescents, couples and families. Judy’s professional experience in the mental health field along with her love of writing, provide insight into real-life experiences and relationships. Her fresh voice and down-to-earth approach to living a happier, more meaningful life are easy to understand and just as easy to start implementing right away for positive results!

Small stories

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Every person can do many acts of love.

 

On our post “I presented our new cards, and already I have distributed some of them to readers and fellow humans who wants to help me distribute them. Yesterday I met a friend who will travel for 5 months and she would love to distribute the cards in South-Africa, India, America, South-America and Asia. I also got a reader from Portland (thank you Laurie) and one from Pennsylvania (thank you Niko), who wants to share the cards. If more readers of this blog would like to help me with distributing them, feel free to send me some contact information, so I can mail some business-cards you can give to people you know, or even complete strangers (thereby also getting extra stars in the «kindness project».

 

If you don`t want to do that, it`s perfectly fine.

 

I hope our readers like what we`ve produced so far. If not, we really love concrete feedback on how we can make the blog even better. We can only deliver high-quality content if readers tell us what could be better.

 

I want to than601835_580478758651088_1235832139_nk all the readers, contributors and people who`ve been involved so far. Without you I would be nothing. The next week I will collect stories from people: What small things have they done for others the last couple of weeks. I will then write a post describing those acts. Maybe I can even videotape it, if people would be interested?

Project kindness to a stranger: Give a smile to a stranger, and you might have made the world a little better

 

 

 

We go about our everyday lives wanting things to always be getting better. We hope that our work makes a difference and those who came before us are proud and we wish for our children to have more than what we were given. As anyone knows who has heard Martin Luther King Jr.’s famous speech—delivered fifty years ago this August~ dreams are at the center of any effort to make things better. And today we have something with more power than we might realize: The internet. It’s not without reason that China and North-Korea tried to keep their inhabitants away from news. The media also have immense power, and even if some might argue that they focus on the wrong things, a lot of journalist really want to make the world a better place. Combine the knowledge, motivation the internet and the media and you have a wonderful recipe: People who actually do something.

 

 

So, by now you might be thinking: Yeah, sure, but what can I DO? When we have the possibility to help, by little effort, we do it. For example, most people help the world by sorting our paper and throw it in a separate garbage bin, thereby saving the rainforest. So, what about potentially making somebody happy by smiling a little?

 

trueResearch shows that our mirror-neurons respond automatically by creating a smile on your own lips. This means that smiling AT someone, actually MAKE them happier. Research also shows that being happy yourself, gives you more energy to be there for others.

I would challenge the readers of this blog to do JUST one nice thing for somebody else (preferably a stranger, because that would have the biggest impact) the next week (five minutes, or if you are in a hurry, two second, is all that`s needed to fulfill the criterias).

 

When you have done that, write WHAT you did, and if you want,  email us at forfreepsychology@gmail.com

For every one of you who does that, you might have made the world just a little better.

  

Nina, psychologist

She Yelled and Called Me Names

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A look at the power of empathy and compassion. . .

Intentional Acts of Kindness

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I believe it’s important to let people know they are loved and valued. Even if you don’t know them, I think we should always let people know they matter. I believe in using what you’ve been given to love others. We can all use our time, energy, creativity, gifts, talents and money to love people. What gifts and resources do you have that you can use to give to others? Maybe you can cook a meal for a single parent, read a book to a child, write someone a poem or a song, mow a neighbour’s lawn, or start a conversation with a stranger.

I created a list of ways that I can show people love and that they matter. These are ways that resonate with my interests and abilities, but there are many more ways to express love. Some people call these “random acts of kindness.” They are random in the sense that no-one has to do anything to receive them; they just have to be. Most of the time we only show love or acknowledgment when someone has done something for us, but everyone deserves to be appreciated. These acts can also be random in the sense that they are done occasionally, at the spur of the moment, almost flippantly.

I’d prefer “intentional acts of kindness” because I believe thought should go into appreciating people and the acts of kindness should be done regularly. Create your own list of ways to intentionally show people they matter and that they are loved, valued and appreciated. Here is my list and the ones I’ve done so far (I’ll hopefully share these experiences later):

  • Pay for another table’s meal at a restaurant or café (done)
  • Write a letter or card (hand-make a card) and send it to someone (done)
  • Take it on yourself to be a photographer at a party or event then send the photos to people who were there – you can even frame the photos or do a scrapbook album (done)
  • Post an encouraging note about someone on the internet, either privately or for all to see (E.g. Facebook, blog) (done)
  • Pay an amount for the person next in line at the supermarket checkout, the service station or cinemas
  • Get people to write encouraging messages to someone on pieces of paper then collate them all and give them to the lucky person (done)
  • Buy a voucher or tickets and post them to someone
  • Take someone out for a coffee, meal or movie and pay for them (done)
  • Take note of things people say they would like then buy it for them (done)
  • Let someone know how they’ve made an impression in your life – could be a teacher, a person you met once, a family member or friend (done)
  • Buy a box of chocolates, flowers or another gift to say thank-you to someone for the work they do (E.g. A crossing lady, a retail assistant, a receptionist, the postie)
  • Make someone a hamper
  • Put some money in an envelope and send it to someone or drop it in a stranger’s letterbox
  • Make gifts from photos (E.g. Calendar, book, mug, T-shirt, magnets, coasters) (done)
  • When someone comments on how much they like something you own, remember it and give it to them later

What would be on your list? Have you done any of these? Share your experiences.

Justice Or Not, We Take One Step At A Time

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Every little thing we do for the better, helps a little

One step at a time

There are so many stories of unjust treatment, and this blog will not watch prejudice, abuse or misuse of power without writing about it. The knowledge and insights we want to share, can hopefully be of inspiration and broaden the reader’s mind even more. The more knowledge we have, the stronger we become. Remember, one person can do great things (think of M. Teresa & M. Gandhi), but before anyone can do anything, it`s important to learn as much as possible about the world around us. We cannot do anything before we know what needs to be done, and cannot help without understanding people and their specific world. There are so many perspectives out there, and we hope to show you some of them. That`s the reason our guest bloggers are much appreciated, and even more importantly, the readers of this blog who are free to give feedback on what this blog suffers from and what we should continue with.

Unjust systems, laws and use of power

Unfortunately, there is still much unjustice in the world, much of which we feel powerless against (often using cognitive dissonance to protect us from that feeling)  since strong leaders and serious problems in the world make us feel helpless. But, this is not so. Sometimes we forget how much power we have, just by speaking up and getting others on board, a lot can change.

shh

we can`t keep silent

 Jerry Alataly writes: One would believe, if justice was blind and treated all people equally, that there would be equal punishment which matched the total amount of harm from the offense of the many people who commit crimes. We like to think that there is fairness in the legal worldsystem, where nobody  receives any type of special treatment; everyone is given the same  opportunity to defend themselves, and, when guilt is proven beyond a  reasonable doubt, face the consequences of their actions.  Punishment. Like we know, this is not always so.  Don`t panic from all  unjust treatment. Take a deep breath, and find the warrior inside  you: Paulo Coelho “Warrior Of The Light”: Then the Warrior thanks his  travelling companions, takes a deep breath and continues on, laden  with memories of an unforgettable journey. His heart is sad, but he  knows that his sword is sacred and that he must obey the orders of  the One to whom he offered up his struggle (from J):

Example of a social problem:

610 million people are registered as disabled worldwide. All around the world, existing stereotypes, fears and prejudices have excluded them from equal opportunities. They are often discriminated, marginalized, or treated with pity and welfare.

Overwhelming? Look here for comfort: Founded in 1988, Dialogue in the Dark (DiD) is an international social enterprise that has reached more than 6 million people in over 160 sites and 30 countries around the world. DiD focuses on promoting the ability of the disabled and creating more than 6000 jobs for the visually impaired worldwide.

So, what can one person do?

Hard to believe that one person can have any real effect? What about Brandon Stanton who met 6-year-old Rumi and his mother and decided to take their picture and put it up on his website. In the process, he made Rumi’s cowboy dreams come true! And what about the man who bikes across Canada to raise awareness for organ donation?

If you are not sure if you want to share your story, inspire others, or do something kind, might I recommend reading about the Benefits of givingIt increases your own happiness and has other unexpected effects. As a psychologist, I don`t think it would be very far off to prescribe “exercises in kindness” along with a healthy lifestyle in general.

Saving someone`s day, might not even cost much time and effort. One man, for example, simply stopped by a car who did not have more gas, pulled out his extra gasoline tank, and gave them enough gasoline to continue.

Do you have examples of what one person can do? Or would you like to guest blog here, and thereby enlightening more minds ready to be transformed? Feel free to email us at: forfreepsychology@gmail.com

Further reading:

More on unjustice

heaven on earth

oneness of humanity

The lies we tell ourselves

Little Acts of Kindness

Validation: You can change things