40 Random Acts of Kindness in 40 Days for my Big 4-0

Random-Acts-of-KindnessLast month was my 40th Birthday and I celebrated by doing 40 Random Acts of Kindness (RAK). I was inspired by reading a post by a mom that had celebrated her birthday by doing 35 acts of kindness with her kids. This was a challenging but fulfilling experience.  One of the unexpected benefits was I became a better listener and more aware of people’s needs as I searched for the next unique RAK I could do.  While I don’t think I am one of those people who can do a RAK every day yet, I look forward to doing more kindness acts in the future.

Highlights from this experience:

  • Having my girls help me with the acts of kindness. My 6yr old holding me accountable, by asking me what my RAK count was every day.
  • Several folks telling me they were inspired to do Random Acts of Kindness
  • Brainstorming RAK ideas with friends
  • Seeing kids using some of the items left (toys, books)
  • Making someone’s day with a RAK

If you would like to learn more about the kindness movement checkout the website Random Acts of Kindness. When coming up with my RAKs I referenced the following two posts, What a Ride!: My Birthday was Awesome and 366 Random Acts of Kindness, and adapted the ideas to what worked for me. The first post had a list of simple ideas that can involve kids; the second post had a lot of charity organizations. For my 40 RAKs I wanted to thank the people around me as well as do random acts for people I didn’t know. My belief was everybody can use an act of kindness.

Here is my list of 40 RAKs. Enjoy!

#1 – Paid the bill for a father of two girls that was standing behind me at the LEGO store.

#2 – Left fancy chocolates, cookies in the company break room

#3 – Surprised my Pilates instructor with a cup of coffee

#4 – Gave a homeless person a $5 gift card to McDonald’s

#5 – Gave the librarians at our local library a box of chocolates. They are always so patient and helpful as I always have a ton of books on hold under three different library cards, across three different loan systems. It can be quite complicated sometimes.

#6 – Brought donuts for my co-workers. Normally one of the managers brings donuts every Friday, so it was fun confusing my colleagues as I brought the donuts on a Thursday.

#7 – Box of chocolates for the children’s librarians at another local library

#8 – Left a Large tip tonight during my birthday dinner.

#9 – Box of chocolates for the staff at my kids’ gymnastics club

gym
#10 – Treated my girlfriends to dinner.party
#11 – Wrote a gratitude letter to my baa (maternal grandmother) with the help of my mom. This act of kindness also made my mom happy too, bonus.

#12 – Wrote a gratitude/get well card to my Aunt.

#14 – Donated some toys to my Mother’s Helper. She redistributes them to other kids that she cares for.

#15 – Left some current magazines for others to read at the gym.

#16 – Gave each of the members in my writing group a book on writing great characters.

#17 – Donated a $5 McDonald’s gift card to a person in need.

#18 – Pushed the swing of a 4yr old at the park and ended up making a new acquaintance with the mom.

#19 – Gave chocolates to our pediatrician’s office and donated some books.doctors
#20 – Gave activity packs, books, and DVDs to the children’s ward at the local hospital. This was a lot of fun, as the kids came up with the painting sheets idea.

activityhospital

#21 – Donated old coats, DVDs, and books to the family homeless shelter.

#22 – Sent words of encouragement to a new mom that was going back to work.

#23 – Gave a friend a voucher for a free ski lift ticket

#24 – Paid the bill for the person behind me at the drive-thru

#25 – Watched a movie tonight with my girls instead of doing my own stuff (clean the house, surf the net, etc).

#26 – Hid scratcher lottery tickets in two books at a book sale

booksale
#27 – Paid the parking meter for some people

#28 – Gave scratcher lottery tickets to the workers at Subway

#29 – Gave a homeless man a $5 gift card to McDonald’s.

#30 – Left jump ropes and hula-hoops at the park for kids to enjoy.park
#31 – Gave out scratcher lottery tickets to the service staff at work

#32 – At Target gave a re-usable bag to the person behind me since she didn’t have one. The retailers no longer give out plastic bags as our city has a ban on them.

#33 – Corralled some lost shopping carts.

#34 – Gave a small thank you gift to a co-worker for helping me out with some customer debug issues.

#35 – Donated some clothing for local foster kids. For those of you living in California, Sleep Train is currently running a Pajama Drive til March 3rd. Just drop of new PJ’s, underwear, or socks and they will be distributed to foster kids in your local community.

sleeptrain
#36 – Left coins at the vending machine
vending machine
#37 – Gave the neighbors some homemade Texas chili

#38 – Started a mini-library at my kids’ gymnastic center

books
#39 – Made two micro-loans via KIVA

#40 – A BIG  thanks to all my family and friends for their in-person and on-line continuous steady stream of likes and positive, uplifting comments. Coming up with nearly 40 unique RAKs was a bit hard, but having you all by my side made it easier.

No Responses to “40 Random Acts of Kindness in 40 Days for my Big 4-0”

  1. Romelle Broas

    What an inspiring post, Darshana! Happy 40th birthday to you! It’s great that you got your girls involved. Love the ideas.

    Reply
  2. Beth Stilborn

    What a marvelous idea — I love all your RAKs. Very creative! (Now you have me wondering if I could possibly do 57 for my next birthday. Maybe spread out over the year!)

    Reply
  3. Kerry Aradhya

    Hi, Darshana. What a great thing to do on your 40th. I had someone in front of me pay for my coffee at Starbucks once (without me knowing, so I’m not really sure how it worked), and I know what a wonderful feeling it can be to be a recipient of a random act of kindness. I’m sure you made so many people feel special!

    Reply
  4. Nina Badzin

    I LOVE this idea! I especially love how simple most are like bringing coffee to the pilates teacher. Stuff like that goes a long way. Awesome idea for your birthday!

    Reply
    • Darshana

      Thanks Nina, glad you liked the ideas. Since life is so busy I tried to think of simple things to do. Also I became a better listener and took more interest in the lives of people around me.

      Reply
  5. Reshama

    I am inspired! Wishing you a very Happy Belated Birthday! and what an awesome way to remember your 40th. Now I know what I want to do on mine 🙂

    Reply
  6. Ann

    Count me in! I would like to start with random acts every now, so closer to my birthday I wI’ll be better at it. Any hints or ideas other than what is mentioned? Thanks for the ideas!

    Reply

Leave a Reply

  • (will not be published)