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Kindness, Pass it on!

I've written in this column many times about the difference between kindness and charity. Clearly, they are not one in the same, though many think they are. In reality, you can be a very kind person but your kindness doesn't always translate to being charitable. And, on the other hand, you can be extremely generous and make large donations to charity, but that doesn't always mean that you are the kindest person you can be.

However, I do firmly believe that charity stems from kindness. It's not often you find an exceptionally charitable person who is not always kind. The fact of the matter is that being kind and being charitable all start in the same place: your heart. And, since many people mistakenly believe that in order to be charitable they must make financial donations they cannot afford, or volunteer many hours they don't have, I think it's a good idea to always start someone off on the road to kindness first. When a person can see just how easy it is to be kind, they will also realize how easy it can be to be charitable.

So, with that in mind, I thought I would reprint one of my favorite lists of kind acts developed by the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation, and just in time for Random Acts of Kindness Week. I just pulled it off my bulletin board to share with you. You'll see my two cents in paranthesis after some of the items on the list.

After you've taken a look through, if you have some great suggestions for how to be kind that you don't see here, please send them to me. I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Have fun being kind.

Kindness: Pass it on!
A list of how to be kind by the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation

Give a flower.
Eat lunch with someone new.
Listen with your heart.
Visit a sick friend.
Clean a neighbor's walk.
Offer a hug.
Give an unexpected gift.
Make a new friend.
Pick up litter.
Say "hello."
Call a lonely student.
Open a door (literally, and figuratively.)
Help carry a load.
Plant a tree.
Cheer up a friend.
Thank a teacher.
Lend a hand.
Read to a young child (even if it's not your own.)
Do a kind act daily.
Leave a thank you note.
Offer your seat.
Share the road courteously with cyclists and walkers.
Be tolerant.
Let another go first.
Bake cookies for firefighters.
Give a compliment.
Help a student make friends.
Assist an adult (and a senior citizen, who may need more help than your average adult.)
Give a balloon away (or a toy or book you don't use anymore.)
Lend a classmate a pencil.
Celebrate something every day.
Encourage a friend.
Respect others.
Walk a dog (for a friend.)
Do a favor.
Forgive mistakes.
Smile at someone new.

Random Acts of Kindess Foundation.

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