52 thoughts on “Random acts of kindness.”

  1. We stopped at Byron Bay for lunch last week on our way back to the Sunshine Coast from a long road trip to Adelaide. Someone anonomously paid our bill. We have no idea who or why. The waitress knew but would not tell. She said it was a goodwill gesture. Thank you to whoever, it made our day.

  2. I love the idea of paying someone’s fine before they even knew it existed! But I’m with you I like the feeling of doing something nice. Even just the other day I was walking down the street, this old lady crossed the road (it was her right of way) and the impatient bastard behind her beeped and yelled at her. I just turned and told her that she was in the right, her smile and thanks lit up my day.

  3. I love the idea of paying someone’s fine before they even knew it existed! But I’m with you I like the feeling of doing something nice. Even just the other day I was walking down the street, this old lady crossed the road (it was her right of way) and the impatient bastard behind her beeped and yelled at her. I just turned and told her that she was in the right, her smile and thanks lit up my day.

  4. I’ve read of another woman who also recently celebrated her birthday doing all sorts of RAOK, so I’ve been thinking about it a lot lately. Hope the opportunity comes around for me.

  5. I have done a few things that have made me proud, but the thing we do regularly (including my children) is to be kind to people in our everyday life, the little things. Using manners, holding doors open, being kind to the grumpy lady at our local post office (even when she is grumpy every time I go in there), saying hello to people in the street, giving directions to people who are lost (this happens where I live a lot), general kindness. One thing that I do want to do though, is compliment people (if I know them or not) when I notice something about them, a pretty dress, a nice smelling perfume. I love it when people do that to me, I want to return the favor.

    • I do the same. Sometimes it shocks people, but I’ll often say how beautiful a person looks or how great they smell.

      Our post office lady is cranky too. She scares me, so much so that Hubby has promised to get the next lot of parcels. 🙁

  6. I think it is a wonderful thing to do,especially these days. Everyone is so busy and unless contacted through the media, they have lost the ability to communicate with others.
    I was paying for a few things in a shop a few months ago, the babies were crying and there was a bit queue behind me as I fumbled in my purse for the money to pay. The man behind me leant over and paid for my items, then helped me pack them. All the time he was very calm, polite and unhurried. I was totally humbled and couldn’t thank him enough. He asked that I just have a good day as his payment. I will never forget that day x

  7. Thank you for this post – each monday our family (and others in our church) have, what’s called, Family Home Evening. Sometimes is a game, sometimes it’s an activity or a movie sometimes it’s a lesson (either from the scriptures or a life lesson, or something that is particular to our family). Tonight my kids are getting a lesson and it’s about acts of kindness. We are already going grocery shopping for a couple where the wife is suffering from cancer. This is the perfect tie-in. Thanks, you are an answer to prayer.

  8. I had the best random act of kindness done to me….
    I was working in retail and having a crap day, when an elderly man came into the shop and said “I always watch you smile at everyone, where did your smile go? You should never lose your happiness” Then the most amazing thing, he presented me with this stunning bouquet of flowers. I had been single for years and years, but even when I wasn’t no-one had ever given me flowers like that. He explained that he use to buy his wife flowers once a week, but now that she had died he was going to give flowers to one random lady a week.
    I never saw him again, but years and years later, I often think of him and his beautiful, gentlemanly behaviour and how he made me feel good about myself. I didn’t get his name but I will never forget how wonderful he made me feel when he kissed my hand and gave me flowers. Thank you kind sir your random act of kindness has never been forgotten.


  9. RAOK can be simple so simple. There is an old lady who lives in our neighbourhood and she walks each day. If I see her I give her a smile and a wave. One day I decided to say hello and got chatting with her. The glow on her face was so warming to my heart, to think that something as simple as taking a few minutes to chat made her happy. A few days later one of my daughters gave her a picture she had painted, she almost had tears in her eyes. Now when I see her we have a little chat, it might not be long but I know that it makes a huge difference to her day.
    Lovely post Chantelle.

  10. I have thought so long, & SO hard, {& even asked my husband} … but I can’t actually think of anything that I have done that might have been a random act of kindness, lol.

    Isn’t that awful?!

    I mean, I think I am a nice person, & literally LIVE to please people, but … I really can’t think of anything random that I’ve done, ha!

    I think I need to go & pay someone’s parking fine one day this week.

    But before I do that, I need to take care of my own outstanding ones 😉


  11. About two summers ago we had this week of torrential rain, so bad that it flooded our suburb one night when we were out grocery shopping with our 19 month old and our newborn. We were one corner away from home barely able to see in front of us when my husband spotted a car stopped in the middle of the road. Hubby immediately pulled over and started helping the young guys push their car off to the side. He jumped back in the car like he had just jumped out of a pool!

  12. Do I practice RAOK?… yes, although as an exGirl Guide I call them “Good Turns” and they should be done often. I must admit my philosophy is that they should not cost me financially since we have financial difficulties so no I wouldn’t pay someone’s parking ticket, although I might put some money in a parking meter.

  13. I’m from the country (in a town that is too small for traffic lights!!) and doing something just because it needs doing happens all the time. I’m not practical but I will always stop, just in case I could make a phone call or, as I did in Adelaide recently, helped a guy push his car off the road. That’s what I love about the country, you just do.

  14. Hello from Greece! Great post..i like your attitude and your thoughts!!Real kindness seems like a miracle today..I remember that episode of Friends!!And the woman that spent her birthday doing 38 acts of kindness was great idea..I wish you a wonderful month with power and magic moments of kindness!!

    Katerina from http://positive-thinking-greece.blogspot.gr

  15. Lovely comments everyone. I have recently been lucky winning competitions, especially tickets and passes. In the past few months I have randomly gone up to some nice people lining up to the movies, galleries and even Grand Designs Live and given them my spare tickets. I don’t want money for them, and the recipients are always so grateful. It feels nice and makes my day even better!

  16. Hello Lovely
    You are the kindness queen and I get that! I really get people that are enthralled about being selfless and helping others.
    Chantelle I like to think I can do that for others – sometimes we do get too wrapped up in our own lives or busyness to think of others and their noise.
    I recall there has only ever been two blog posts reducing me to tears in my time with blogging.
    And – one of the two was yours this yea,r about the man on the plane upon your rerun flight to Sydney – you gave your time, your heart, your words and presence to and especially – no judgement.
    He would never forget you and I bet he thinks of you daily.

    I have not ever forgotten that random act of kindness you displayed.

    have a lovely day


  17. my hubby always says that to me – but its just about making the person in need feel less alone in their struggle (even if I am not strong enough to help push the car or help them fix it) I always think twice about helping in regards to my safety as a lone female with dependents in the car. If we all do what we can, surely thats better than nothing at all!

  18. We recently had a couple crash their car really badly near our house. It was quite amazing they only had minor injuries, as they could easily have died. It’s a steep sloped forested area, and they crashed at night. All our neighbours came out to help… they looked after them until the emergency crews arrived and took over. It felt so good to be part of a community that wanted to help in whatever way they could, rather than just be onlookers. I don’t think I will ever forget being part of that.

  19. I am not sure if it was kind but once I saw a young girl (about 16) being dragged by another, a young man around 18, towards his car on the side of the highway. I called 911 and reported the situation. Not sure if the girl was in trouble but I’d like to think I helped in some way.

  20. also, Im not sure if this is the right place to post it, but there is a family in need of RAK. I’ve posted the link to your facebook page. If anyone wants to help out..

  21. A few times Hubster and I paid the tolls for the car behind us…loved doing that, just wanted to see the looks on their faces tho 🙂

  22. I posted about this exact thing on my blog today Telle. I just had a cake made for Raffie’s dedication, the offer was made between all his hospital visits and the catering company we had booked going bust. It was so lovely, so generous and I hope she has someone do the same for her and hope her business really kicks off.

  23. My husband and I were driving to visit my parents one day, a two hour trip, straight after he he’d worked a 12hr. Shift. halfway there we saw a lady broken down on the side of the road in country Victoria. Hubby knows a little bit about cars so we stopped. Car needed water so he walked about twenty min. To the first house, nobody there but jumped a fence , got water and walked back to discover she had a burst hose, couldn’t do anything. She was on her way to her daughters place for a family wedding the next day. He tells her to lock her car up, pushes it off the road and drives an hour and a half up into The Otways to her daughters place adding another two hours to our trip, all done without any hesitation at all. The lady was so grateful and quite upset that she couldn’t even offer us fuel money as she didn’t have any on her. She asked for our address to send some but he told her to have an extra drink at the wedding for him and that would be thanks enough! I was so proud that day and every day of the man I chose to marry 🙂

  24. Once my husband and I went out for our anniversary dinner. Our budget was really tight, but we decided we could justify a meal out to celebrate. We were seated at a table next to this family, a girl about our son’s age we figured, with a white gauze bandage wrapped around her head, and her mom and dad, both of whom looked like they hadn’t slept for 48 hours. We live in the home of the Mayo Clinic, where people come from all over the world to have their extreme medical conditions treated, so this sight is not uncommon. But as we sat there next to them celebrating our anniversary we imagined what it must be like to sit at their table with your child’s head in a bandage. It didn’t take us long to decide that we wanted to pay for their meal. We had no idea what their bill would come to and if we could afford it. We called our waiter over and told him to bring us their bill and to let them know that their meal was paid for, but to not tell them who was paying for it. This wasn’t about us. It was about them. I can’t even begin to describe how beautiful an experience it was to watch their faces as the waiter told them their meal was taken care of. My husband and I were like giddy little kids the rest of the night. It sure did feel good to help them even if it was a sacrifice for us. Especially because it was a sacrifice for us? I wish we had the resources to do stuff like that more often. It’d be so fun!

    • What lovely kind generous people you are. I hope the favour is returned to you in some way sometime.

  25. I am a Breast Cancer survivor of 11 years. I worked at my job in an antique mall through the chemo and radiation. I had great support from the people I worked with and I had fun interacting with customers. I was bald and always wore a decorative scarf on my head. I remember chatting with one customer and she asked if I had cancer and I told her, “Not anymore”. As we talked, I was processing her sale and I counted out the change wrong, and I instantly knew it. I said, “It’s the chemo!” and my co worker said, “Ya right.” and I answered, “That is my story and I am sticking to it!” The customer just stood there and smiled and looked at me like she couldn’t believe we were laughing. I thanked her and she left and kept looking back at us. About 2 hours later, she came back with a bag with a little pillow that said HOPE, and handed it to me. We both welled up in tears and she left with no words, except me saying thank you,,,She never knew how that impacted me, and I never knew what it meant to her, but somehow, we touched something beautiful in each other. Ever since, I try to do the little things that are RAOK.
    When I see older people looking lost, I ask if I can help, and usually it is to find something in a store that is overwhelming them.Let someone cut in line ahead of you, in the car or any line. And the most weird thing I do is when I find something on the floor in a store, like clothes that fall off hangers, I hang them back up. (OCD) When we go to a beautiful river or park, I pick up trash that was tossed by others. Yes, it makes me feel good and somehow, I hope it makes the day better for someone else.

  26. I always try to give random acts of kindness. Be it just smiling at a person walking past. Helping a mother on the bus with a pram or shopping. I like to make people smile.

  27. I love this post, Chantelle. Thankyou.
    I had tears in my ears reading the first comment from Julie. I have been lucky enough to be on the receiving end of some Random Acts of Kindness and the amazing feeling stays with me for days….and a lifetime.
    Only last Christmas, I went early-morning shopping and had left my credit card behind and also was having probs with the card I was trying to use. Without me realising what was happening ( as I started turfing the “not so necessary” items out of my bags) the kind angel behind me, a lovely lady in her 40’s, had whispered to the cashier that she would really like to pay for my groceries. Then the cashier told me and I started this ridiculous “No, no I can’t possibly!” banter. This woman said she does this often and it would make her day to help me, without anything in return except that I find it within me to do something nice for someone else. The most amazing thing is that this was a HUGE shop and totalled $130! I felt so humbled and blessed and had tears in my eyes as I gave her a hug. I do try to incorporate this notion of kindness in my daily dealings with others. It doesn’t take much on our part and even if it does, the benefits far outweigh the negatives. Thanks for this great reminder! : )

  28. Whenever I see someone doing acts of kindness I’m always amazed. I think that you are suppose to get a high of doing something nice for someone even though they don’t know or at least that’s how it was explained to me when I was younger. Now I’m not so sure if that’s how I’m suppose to feel.

  29. Just saw this quote and remembered you had posted about this: “When you carry out acts of kindness you get a wonderful feeling inside. It is as though something inside your body responds and says, yes, this is how I ought to feel.” ~ Harold Kushner.

  30. A lady came into work the other day and she had on this dress that looked amazing on her. I had to tell her, it was just gorgeous. The look on her face was awesome and she thanked me:) I later found out she has lost about 50kg from before i had started working there:)

    I love RAOK. I find things at Op shops for friends that i think they might love and i love to surprise them with the little gifts, they never cost too much but i love sharing.

  31. My favorite RAOK is to offer to unload & pack groceries for a mama with a crying child in the grocery. It’s embarrassing and rattling to be making such a public display, been there done that, and someone did it for me long, long ago. Sometimes I even get to talk to the crying child instead (that’s my fave, to see if I can’t stop their crying, the secret is to whisper, they stop so they can hear what you’re saying. works with even the littlest ones)

  32. I was 7 months pregnant when I fainted….in the middle of a crowded shopping centre, me and my baby belly out cold on the floor in front of all my fellow shoppers. This happened twice to my horror! Both times there was someone there when I came to, assuring me I would be ok. One lady had even gone and purchased a sugary snack while I was out to it!!! It’s a nice feeling to think someone will catch you when you fall :-))))

  33. I am going to attempt The Birthday Project for my birthday in December. I came across it looking for a story I had read about a man who gave out $5 bills on his birthday. I liked her idea better and was quite inspired. I’ve already started collecting ideas, gift cards, etc. Aside from that, I usually participate in a gratitude challenge every year which involves giving away a gift and a dollar to a complete stranger everyday. And aside from that I try to do random acts of kindness- but not nearly often enough.

  34. Love this so much. I really think that we should follow those prompts we all get, but have gotten really good at squashing down. Put ourselves out there a bit. Such a great reminder! Thank you!

  35. I think random acts of kindness are so precious and even a lovely comment is something that can, quite literally, make someone’s day – or perhaps even change the course of their life. Some of my biggest life-changing moments have been from the comments or actions of someone I may never see again.

    I do feel that another very important act of kindness, though, is to put our own biases and opinion aside and just . . . live and let live. I’m noticing a shift in the consciousness of some people of late – watching them give little well-disguised stabs or putting someone down because they ‘don’t agree’ or don’t do things the same way.

    The biggest kindness of all is tolerance, acceptance and allowing others to ‘be’.


  36. I was driving from Ballarat to Melbourne, about a 2 hour trip with my two small children when a car pulled up beside me and flagged me to pull over. I was alarmed, being a single mum and wasn’t sure what to do. The car, full of young men kept insisting I pull over so I did. One car pulled up in front of me, another behind me. About five men jumped from the cars and explained that my car was overheating. I popped the boot and we discovered that the fan belt had come off. One of the men managed, with some trouble, to put it back on and they topped up my water. They then chaperoned me back to Melbourne, one car in front one behind, to make sure I got home ok. I’ll never forget that. Never.

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