Those who know me well know that I’m not really one for the birthday spotlight. It’s not that I dislilke birthdays (really, I’m ok with aging!), it’s that I don’t like being the center of attention for no reason.
As the Facebook messages are starting to pop up, I realized I really do have a birthday wish. This year, it’s big too. It’s going to take more than a credit card to make it happen. Maybe my Equity family can help make this wish come true too…..
Rather than having Happy Birthday messages throughout the day, I would love to see posts from my friends and family sharing stories of how they helped someone else. Make today a day to be kind to strangers. Practice random acts of kindness. I’ll be doing the same.
It’s amazing what happens when we slow down for a moment to realize that we’re all people. Make eye contact and you’ll see that the person who just shoved past you in the train station may just be distracted because she didn’t get much sleep last night because she was caring for a sick child. Or perhaps the guy who just cut you off on the highway is driving a rental car and really didn’t see you because he’s not familiar with the car’s blind spots. Whether it’s a tragic story or a touching story, we all have a story. Take a moment to be intentional, to realize that we’re all in this together, and that it’s really not “me against the world”.
So, instead of asking for gifts or greetings, I ask that you share an act of kindness, random or not, that you or someone you know performed. Buy coffee for the next person in line, pay the toll for someone behind you, hold the door for someone, smile at someone, gather the loose shopping carts in the parking lot, help someone carry a bag, leave a note for your postal carrier, tell someone thank you, call a friend, leave change by the vending machine. Just do something. It doesn’t have to cost anything out of pocket. We often forget that helping each other isn’t just about money. And it’s always a mood booster when you do. Seriously, just try it. Do something nice and see if you don’t instantly perk up.
I’d love to hear a story for each year I’ve celebrated, but I’ll be overjoyed to hear even just one. (By the way, my birthday is 1/31, but you can be kind any day. So even if you’re ready this after that day, you can still take action and share your story.)
If you need inspiration, check out some of the sites here. The idea of a birthday project isn’t mine. I was inspired by reading stories of others who’ve made their special day truly special.
Happy RAOK Day!