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February 11th-17th: Random Acts of Kindness Week!

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Hi Friends!,

February 11th - February 17th is "Random Acts of Kindness" (RAK) week and we couldn’t be more excited! Here at Esselle, we believe a little kindness can go a long way. In honor of this special week, we asked some of the kindest souls we know to share how they’ll be spending RAK week, to share how others can spread some kindness, or to share a time where a random act of kindness uplifted them. From these stories, we see that the smallest gesture can make someone else’s day, month, year, and sometimes play a pivotal role throughout their entire life. 2017 was a rough, unpleasant, and ugly year for many. Let’s make 2018 the year where we’re all a little more kind to one another.

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How will you be spending RAK week?

“I think smiling goes along way. I always try to smile at people if we make eye contact as we pass by each other. This week I plan on thinking of people I am grateful for and letting them know I appreciate them. You never know when you will have that time or opportunity again.” - Alison Silvius // LMFT

“Random Acts of Kindness are contagious. If someone does something kind for me, I absolutely make sure I do something kind in return. If I do something kind for someone, I often see them turn around and do something kind in return; it warms the heart. For example, the starbucks by my house is notorious for random customers paying for the order behind them. 70% of the time I go in there, I never know my bill because I’ll end up paying for the order behind me. It’s neat, keeps you on your toes, and makes you feel great about the entire day. But even something small like a smile or acknowledging a stranger can go VERY far. Thursday, while at the gym, a young gentleman walked in to take a look at the facility. He asked me what the machine I was using was for, I smiled and explained. He was shy and short with his responses. I asked him if he was new and engaged him in a short conversation with me and another person. It ended with him saying, “I was having an extremely bad morning, but I’m really glad I stopped by the gym. You girls are really nice people”. All we did was answer his question and ask him one in return. We don’t realize that kindness, as a basic personality trait, can literally change someone else’s life. The little daily things: saying “hello”, responding to someone instead of pretending you didn’t hear them, sharing a pencil, smiling when someone sits next to you instead of acting bothered, showing genuine interest and concern in another human being simply because they are another human being, etc. We are so engrossed in our virtual worlds, we’ve forgotten how to act in the real one. Truly just acknowledging someone with common courtesy and politeness, can literally save a life.”  - Kirsten O’Malley // Founder of HowSimplyAmazing.

 

How can others spread some kindness?

People tend to spend a lot of time these days on reddit. Every once in a while, amidst the fury of low effort posts, comes someone that posts helpful and/or insightful information. To show that their efforts aren't in vain and that you truly do appreciate them taking the time to do something out of the ordinary, one can send them a Dogecoin tip via SoDogeTip Bot. Dogecoin is a cryptocurrency whose primary function has evolved into an immutable tipping service. The community has a strong legacy in pursuing charitable endeavors and promoting goodwill. For example, the community sent the Jamaican bobsled team to the Olympics by donating 26 million Dogecoins. In support of “Random Acts of Kindness” week, I strongly encourage everyone to give this method of tipping a try. Please see https://github.com/just-an-dev/sodogetip/blob/master/README.md to get started. Wow such amaze!” - Lauren Shun // Founder of Yuzu Soap.

“I am part of an online chat group focused on language learning. We have people from all over the world in our group and we quickly all become like a family. We have one member who is going through rough times and have found themself homeless. Most of us were unaware until one friend contacted us wanting to get a care package together for her. It's a small gesture considering everything but seeing people come together for someone in need is wonderful. Random acts of kindness aren't always for strangers but if you want to help this week It's important to remember that the homeless population doesn't only need donations and volunteers at soup kitchens over the holidays. Go out and volunteer and help all year round.  Buy someone a meal, a jacket, pads and tampons, there are little things we take for granted that others need. Go out and do something not to make yourself feel better, but because you know someone needs it.” - Sam Campbell // College student.

 

Let’s get personal:

For much of 2017, I tried my hardest to fast forward through each day. Life seemed to be a cruel series of downs and steeper downs. Chemotherapy and all its side effects really pushed me to the brink of a very unfamiliar darkness. Confronting a bald head and climbing numbers on the scale really tested the diminishing self-confidence. The rideshare driver who picked me up on a random Tuesday knew none of this. He didn’t know I was on the way to my umpteenth clinic visit. He didn’t have a clue as to why I had to go. But maybe he sensed something when I got into the car. He gave me an incredibly bright smile and asked me a simple question: How are you doing today? I decided to tell him the truth, and he handled it in the most human way. He didn’t shy away from my dark situation; in fact, he offered light in the very genuine way he listened so intently to my story and in the way he didn’t go quiet, as many others probably would have. (I wouldn’t have blamed any of them.) It may not seem like much, but the way this stranger showed up for me in those ten minutes really meant a lot to me. I left the car feeling just a little bit of joy. A random act of kindness doesn’t need to be dramatic. The power of such a gesture packs a punch because it wasn’t expected, but was very much needed. You just never know when the world needs it.” - Stephanie Chuang // CEO & Founder of OneDavid (Website Coming Soon).


“The best RAK that I not only remember vividly but actually draw upon when I need uplifting, is a time I took my kids to lunch at Nordstrom's Cafe alone when they were 3, 3 and 5. An older man, approached our table and told me, "I worried when I saw you alone with your children but they are all wonderfully behaved. You and your husband have done an amazing job raising them. I can't wait to tell my mother that parents like you still exist." That RAK was the best compliment of my life. And awarded the hardest work I've ever done, being a mother.” - Danielle Gray // Young Children's Ministry Director & Mom of three.


“I saw a young lady in her early 20s giving out food samples outside the actual restaurant. It was a cold evening. She was greeting everyone but looked cold, even with a jacket on. A heater wasn’t provided for her. I went into the coffee shop next door. When I mentioned that the hot cocoa I was buying was for the young lady, the baristas generously shared their employee discount since she was a friend of theirs, and they were touched by what I was doing. To see her smile in surprise when I handed her the huge cup of hot cocoa warmed my heart.” - Teena Posas // Esselle Fan.


“Fourteen years ago I was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer.  We’d all go to the hospital together so I could get my chemo treatments. My husband would take the kids somewhere fun while I stood in the hospital for hours.  Before picking me up, they would stop by the hospital gift shop to get me a little something. My favorite thing was a Mr. Good Bar! After each chemo treatment, I would have to be in bed for days. My husband had to do all the cleaning, shopping, cooking, dropping off and picking up from school. I remember people would drop off home cooked meals because they knew how hard it and overwhelming it could all be. Even my mother in law would come to help around the house. This went on for months while I recovered, it was then that I realized how nice and caring people could truly be.  It was also during that time that we all learned it’s okay to accept help from others when they offer. It was their way of being there for us when we needed help the most. Now when someone is going through the same thing, we offer our help and do whatever we can to make their life just a little easier. And I suggest you do the same.” - JoAnne Campbell // Cancer Survivor.

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How are you planning on spending RAK week? Have a story you’d like to share? Share a comment below!

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Xo,

Esselle