Sunday, November 13, 2011

Happy World Kindness Day - Pay It Forward through the Autism Community and the World

Hello Aspierations Blog Visitors,

I hope you're having a pleasant day today wherever you are in the world.  Today is November 13th, 2011 also known as World Kindness Day.  Were you aware?  Would you like to be?  Well if you read this blog, you're going to be, so enjoy the ride!

The Mission…
The mission of the World Kindness Movement (WKM) is to inspire individuals towards greater kindness and connect nations to create a kinder world. The WKM encourages individuals of all nations to set up their own kindness movements. It is also actively seeking kindness movements to join the WKM. Currently, membership stands at 18 kindness organizations with representation from Australia, Brazil, Canada, Dubai, England, India, Italy, Japan, Nepal, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Scotland, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand and the USA.

http://www.worldkindness.org.sg/

In my opinion, the world can certainly use more kindness... and acceptance... and tolerance.  It starts at home. It starts with me. It starts with you.  Today and tomorrow may we look beyond ourselves and beyond the boundaries of our city, state and country.  May we look beyond our culture, our race and our religion and realize that we are citizens of the world, beautiful people from the inside out. We are able and meant to do good works.

Spreading love through random acts of kindness really can make a difference in people's lives. You may find that as you set out to do a kind act (perhaps anonymously) for another without looking for recognition or glory that a couple things will happen.  One... you'll be making a positive difference in someone else's life and give that person confidence and faith that there are kind people in this world.  Two... you'll feel a special joy inside, one that is much richer than any tangible reward.

Something funny happened today. Shortly after I was reading about World Kindness Day and trying to think of a way that our new non-profit Autism Empowerment could participate in the coming years ahead, my youngest son yelled from downstairs asking everyone to "come quickly and take a look out the window!!"

There in our front yard and also in yards throughout our neighborhood, we saw teenagers raking and cleaning the leaves and yards of the neighborhood residents.  At this time in Washington, that is a lot of wet leaves!  In fact our boys were just playing in them yesterday!



What a kind and thoughtful turn!  Seeing what those kids were doing made me smile. It also made me stop and think what I could do to make a positive difference in someone else's life today, tomorrow and the day after that.

To start, I want to share a couple links with you in case you or your family would like to get involved with the World Kindness movement.  I think it's a terrific opportunity for kids and adults on and off the autism spectrum to show that each one of us has the power to create positive exchanges and events in the lives of those we love as well as in the lives of complete strangers.

No matter what your ability, each one of us has the power to do something positive

Personally, I enjoy performing acts of kindness anonymously and a few years ago I picked up some free Smile cards from HelpOthers.org.  The boys and I have had lots of fun finding ways to give them out.

Maybe you'd like to give it a try?


http://www.helpothers.org/

There is also an organization in Australia doing something similar with Ripple Kindness cards.

DID YOU KNOW: It is said that if you perform two acts of kindness a day, and the recipients of that kindness go on to perform two acts of their own, more than a thousand acts of kindness can been shared in just 10 days. But if each of those same people shared five acts instead of two, more than 19 million acts of kindness could be shared in just 10 days! 

http://www.rippleeffects.com.au/RippleCards.html

Do you need some ideas to inspire you?  Do you want to read stories of other's acts of kindness?  Believe me, if you go and read those stories on a day when all it seems we hear on the news is negativity, it will truly lift your spirits.  Try making a daily choice to put yourself in a positive atmosphere and live your life with kindness, integrity and accountability.  It will rub off on others and it will be a great example to those around you.

Over 41,000 people "Like" the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation at Facebook. Their foundation inspires people to practice kindness and pass it along to others.

http://www.randomactsofkindness.org/

If you've never seen the movie "Pay It Forward" with Kevin Spacey, Helen Hunt and Haley Joel Osment, I also recommend checking it out as it was the inspiration for a number of kindness movements.

We are all capable of doing kind deeds and good works. It often starts just with a smile. Never underestimate the power of a genuine smile or a kind hello to a stranger to help lift his or her mood.  There have been many times in my life when I was feeling down or lonely and someone else's kindness helped me get out of my funk and lift my spirits.

We all have hard and challenging days and events happen in our lives.  It's part of the human experience. I have found that one way to help me get out of my place of challenge is to keep the faith and turn the adversity around by trying to make a positive difference somewhere else.  Oftentimes when we can take the focus off ourselves and work on positive projects, uplifting tasks and empowering others, we find in the end that we are inspired and empowered too.  The four foundational pillars of Autism Empowerment are Accept, Enrich, Inspire, Empower but the value system and philosophy we embody can be applied to anyone's life.

So if you're feeling in the mood or even if you're not, make sure to bookmark some of these links and check them out:

http://www.randomactsofkindness.org/Resources/Kindness-Links/

Also, we designed this logo earlier in the week but as I was looking at it today, I realized the Autism Empowerment logo actually fits in quite nicely with World Kindness Day so I'm sharing it here below:

We're spreading "Accept, Enrich, Inspire, Empower" to the four corners of the world. Come join us!

Thanks for stopping by. By visiting this blog today, you actually paid a special kindness to me... so thank you!  I will do my best to pay it forward!

Karen 

2 comments:

  1. Hi Karen. Great to see you back blogging again. Congrads on Autism Empowerment. I know I'll be hearing that name worldwide in the near future.

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  2. Thank you so much, Stephen! I am incredibly excited about Autism Empowerment. I look forward to being able to transform what is in my head into reality. I appreciate your support and thank you for stopping by!

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