And let’s face it, with the current state of the world, we need as many acts of kindness as possible right now.
In an ideal world, being kind to everyone we connect with would be the way everyone operated.
Unfortunately, that’s not the way things are.
Not necessarily because we’re all spawned from the devil like a certain orange fellow with bad hair who shall not be named.
No, it’s because a lot of us are so wrapped up in our own lives, out here trying to survive that sadly we often don’t have anything left over to make random acts of kindness a daily occurrence.
However, most of us are online daily so I thought that online random acts of kindness would be more manageable for some.
Here are 9 random acts of kindness that you can do online this week and beyond:
1. Pay someone a compliment
You know that person you stalk on social media and tell all your friends about, but never actually comment on anything they post, well give them a compliment.
Tell them how much you admire and appreciate what they do, and why.
If it’s someone with only a couple hundred or thousand followers, even better.
It may feel creepy, but if you leave a genuine, sincere message, it will be highly appreciated.
In real life: Pay a friend, colleague or stranger a genuine compliment.
2. Post an inspiring message
I’d suggest Facebook or Instagram as you can write much more – you can’t really post an authentic, heartfelt message with Twitter’s 140 character limit.
Shout out your favourite peeps and tell them what they mean to you.
Alternatively, acknowledge someone who has made a difference in your life.
If there’s someone who’s not on social media, mention them anyway then screenshot the image and send it to them.
You also have the option of recording a video to make it even more personal.
In real life: Give them a call or arrange to meet them in person. Have a meaningful, uplifting chat.
In person, keep your phones out of the conversation. Connect authentically without digital distraction.
Alternatively, send them a hand-written letter.
“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” – Aesop
3. Write a blog post about someone who inspires you
If you have a blog, you could write a post dedicated to someone or a number of people who inspire you.
Be generous, honest and authentic.
You could even write a poem or create a photo story.
In real life: If it’s possible to connect more intimately via phone or in person, then do so.
If it’s someone you only have online interaction with, then suggest having a chat via Skype – you’ll be surprised how many people are happy to connect (obviously not if it’s Beyonce or Oprah!)
4. Leave a meaningful comment or review
If you’ve been reading someone’s blog for a while and like what they doing, let them know.
If you’re in a Facebook group where there’s not a lot of interaction, but the host shows up consistently, respond to a post or at least “like” one.
Additionally, remember that review you promised to leave the restaurant you loved or that hotel that blew your mind, do it.
In real life: If you have a fantastic meal at a restaurant, ask to see the manager, and ask him to give your compliments to the chef.
Give your positive feedback in the moment, in person.
5. Promote a small business
You can do this via social media or a blog post.
Let people know about a business or businesses you support and share your experience of using their products or services.
Additionally, regularly share their posts on social media.
When small businesses are in their early stages, they rely heavily on word of mouth so your referral could be invaluable to them.
In real life: Choose to shop with small businesses and encourage your friends, family and colleagues to support them too.
“Carry out a random act of kindness, with no expectation of reward, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you.”
– Princess Diana
6. Send a postcard
If you’re on holiday or travelling, why not do that old-fashioned thing called sending a postcard.
Why? Because I’m sure there are people in your life who do not participate in the online world. And besides, it’s more personal (and unexpected in 2017) than sending an e-card, SMS or Whatsapp message.
Here are 3 apps/websites that not only let you create your postcards using your own photos, but they also post them for you.
International postage can be quite pricey, so using one of these apps/websites could actually work out more cost effective depending on where you are.
In real life: Send the real deal. You can either buy a standard postcard or you could print a photo you took yourself and then send it with a handwritten note.
7. Create a piece of digital art
Last week, graphic artist Nikki Farquharson created a piece of art inspired by recent world events. And although her work is all hand-drawn (yes, she’s super talented), there is no reason why you can’t create something digitally to raise awareness of a cause you support.
Alternatively, you could create a piece of digital art dedicated to a person or group of people who inspire you.
For loved ones, you could put together an online album made up of photos from a recent holiday together, a special occasion or celebration or simply a collage of your favourite photos together.
In real life: Make an actual piece of art for someone or print off photos and create a real life photo album.
8. Acknowledge good customer service
In the UK, we’re known as a nation of complainers and now with social media, more of us are making sure the world knows when we receive poor customer service or shoddy goods.
But how often do we shout about great customer service? More specifically, how often do we acknowledge the person providing that exceptional service?
Next time you receive excellent customer service, ask for the agent’s name and then let the company and social media world know about the service that person provided.
In real life: Send an email or write a letter acknowledging the service you received and expressing your appreciation.
9. Support a crowdfunding project
People are now taking matters into their own hands when it comes to making their dreams a reality.
If there is a project or business idea that you support, put your money where your mouth is by pledging a donation.
It doesn’t have to be a huge amount; gift what you can afford.
In real life: You could donate your time and expertises to help get the project up and running.
“Ask yourself: Have you been kind today? Make kindness your daily modus operandi and change your world.” – Annie Lennox
It’s likely that you already do at least one of the random acts of kindness mentioned above on a regular basis.
I hope that with this post we’re able to incorporate even more random acts of kindness into our lives and become more intentional about how we interact online.
However, remember the world still needs you to continue doing random acts of kindness in person.
And of course, as always, you need to be kind to yourself also.