10 Random Acts of Kindness

By Feb 23, 20155 Comments

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There are so many ‘Pay It Forward’ missions out there these days. In discussing them you’ll come across a variety of opinions. Paying it forward with the expectation that someone else will pay it forward immediately after you? Is that really a random act of kindness? Or is it really hopes of setting off a chain reaction that others will feel pressured to comply with?

When you pay for the car behind you in the Starbucks drive-thru, do you expect that they will pay for the person behind them? I know that people expect it. Hope for it. They want to be the one to set things rolling.

And I understand that. But sometimes? The most random acts are the ones with no expectations. Here are a few ideas for random acts of kindness you can consider doing in your day-to-day.

10 ideas for random acts of kindness you can offer to those around you. Most cost little or no money.

10 Random Acts Of Kindness

1. Find yourself out to eat with your coupon book on-hand? Stop by the next table and see if they can use one of your buy-one get-one coupons. They’ll truly appreciate the free entree!

2. See a mom or dad struggling to bring their grocery cart back to the store or the cart return while their child is wiggling in their arms? Grab it for them. Even if you’re headed to your own car. Trust me. They’ll love you for it.

3. Have you seen the little free libraries that people have been making? They’re popping up in the most random of places. Sometimes your local coffee shop will have them. Sometimes they’re in front of your neighbor’s house. Bring a few books over and drop them off. No note. No swap. Just pass them on. You’ll make someone’s day.

4. Do you carry a discount card for the store you’re shopping in, and the person in front of you doesn’t? Let them borrow yours. It doesn’t cost you anything and might give them the savings they need to stretch their paycheck this week.

5. Live in an area where there are parking meters? Leave a few quarters on someone’s car or pop them into the meter to save them from getting a ticket. 25c will go so far.

6. Same for the office vending machine. A few coins or a dollar or two on the nearby table or at the machine gives someone their free 3 o’clock caffeine fix or snack for the day.

7. Have you seen those leave a penny, keep a penny containers at the check-out counters? Leave a few pennies. Someone will need them eventually.

8. Bring some books or magazines to your doctor’s office. Leave them there.

9. Girl Scouts are out and about selling cookies right now, and yes, they’re everywhere! You may not want or need to buy any cookies, but if you feel like it, toss a dollar or two into their donation jar or give it to the girls. Just one dollar represents more to them than they make per box sold. I can speak from experience and say how amazing it feels to receive that extra money. The girls and the troop leaders truly appreciate it.

10. Do something anonymously for a neighbor in need. Shovel their front walk, rake the random leaves that clutter the front yard, leave a gift card for a local restaurant that delivers, drop off a bottle of wine, a box of chocolates, or something to say ‘Hey, I see you and I care!’ to someone who lives alone, or a family with a new baby, an elderly person or couple … all of those things can truly brighten their day.

So, what’s your favorite random act of kindness? Share your ideas so we can encourage others to do good and simple things that will unexpectedly bring a smile to someone’s face.

About Andrea Bates

Andrea blogs regularly about being a mom, family and relationships, life in the south, how much she misses New York, lots of great books, and whatever else crosses her mind over at Good Girl Gone Redneck. You can also find her sharing ALL.THE.THINGS over at her Facebook page!


  • I love your post, doing good things for others always makes you feel good and also brightens the other person’s life as well.

  • Reelika says:

    Very interesting ideas! People don’t really think about these things, and I guess the best thing to do is to write them down and start using them every single day. Even one blessing per day can make a difference in someone’s life! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • Kelly says:

    Great ideas! I love it!

  • I have given up my seat on busy flights so families could sit together . One time I had even paid for an upgrade and giving up my seat resulted in moving towards the back of the plane. However the smile on the child’s face being able to sit close by their family was truly priceless and totally worth it. I continue this practice and just wish that others would do the same.

  • Mimi says:

    I don’t think I have ever “expected” anyone to continue the pay it forward. I just love to do things like this and I really cannot control what happens after that. I try to do what the Lord has lead me to do and then it is up to the person on the receiving end to do whatever feels right or what the Lord leads them to do. I can only pray that it benefits them as much as possible.