It’s not often that we get the chance to do something good, really truly good, for someone. I got that chance today and I’m the happiest person alive.
Give yourself bonus points if you’ve done a kindness for someone you don’t know. Double bonus if you get no credit whatsoever for the deed. A lack of recognition does not diminish the deed or the feeling that comes from it one bit. In fact, in my humble view, it makes it better.
Especially fulfilling is when the recipient is a child. Who can resist that urge to help? You’d have to have a heart of stone to ignore the needs of an innocent who is young and wanting.
What you learn when you do good is just how amazing it feels. It puts a smile on your face, a lightness in your step (not to mention your heart) and gives you a wonderful feeling of cooperating with the forces of good in the world.
Or maybe that’s just what it does for me.
Anyhow, movements like Pay it Forward have captured this perfectly. I love that these ideas have gained a following. The stories I’ve heard of people taking this idea to heart in everyday life are uplifting… give you hope that the human race is not doomed after all.
Like paying for the next car’s order in a drive through. Or middle schoolers shoveling out the homes of older people or those in need. These random acts of kindness don’t have to be big or time-consuming to lift someone out of sadness or hopelessness.
To make a difference in a life. To lift black despair.
In these cases of doing good you become a willing, living, breathing force for good. All you need to do is open yourself up to helping out, not judging or expecting any gratitude or recognition. The reward comes when you give yourself up to imaging how the person who gets your gift will feel… what a difference it will make.
Sometimes it even makes you giggle.
The feeling of giving this way is amazing, thrilling, as powerful as any you might know. The pure joy of doing good for those who you don’t even know is what prompts wealthy people to donate fortunes to build dedicate hospital wings and the like. It’s the knowledge that you have done something unselfishly good for others, people that you may never know or meet, that stays with you long after the deed is done.
Every time you think about what you’ve done, you get that same wonderful feeling. Doing good for another fills you up, makes you smile no matter how bad the day has been. And that’s only what it does for you.
Imagine what that unasked for bit of kindness does for the person who receives it.