Tag Archives: Random act of kindness

Self Care Advent Calendar Day 17

Welcome back – it’s so lovely to see you here again.

Self care is important. When you don’t take care of yourself you are letting yourself, and those around you, down. How you are affect how others are.

A lot of what I’ve written about during the first part of this self care advent calendar has involved just focussing on yourself. I make no apologies for that – you are important.

Although what I am about to suggest today may seem as though it’s more about other people, it’s still about you. It’s about how it makes you feel, how you think about yourself.

I would like you to be proud of yourself, to think about yourself as a good person. So, what do you need to do in order to feel that way. I’m sure you have answers of your own, and they may be the most important things for you to work on, but I’m going to suggest one way that seems to work well for me and lots of others.

Random acts of kindness.

If you haven’t heard of this concept before, it’s kind of self explanatory. You do something nice for someone random. Ideally this isn’t someone in your social circle, they’re not a friend or family, they’re not even someone you work with – just a random stranger.

Sometimes it’s nice to see how people react to your kindness, sometimes it’s best just to do it and move on.

I would LOVE to know some suggestions for random acts that you could or have done, but in case you’re struggling for inspiration, here are some of my easy favourites.

  1. Leave some change in a vending machine.
  2. Give to a food bank.
  3. Give a stranger a flower.
  4. Give a stranger a compliment.
  5. Top up a parking meter.
  6. Leave a positive note for someone.
  7. Send an anonymous gift.
  8. Give some socks to a homeless person.
  9. Send someone a drink in a bar.
  10. Read a random blog and tell them something nice about it.

I’m not a big fan of concepts like law of attraction or Karma, but I do think you get what you give. The more positivity and love you put out into the world, the more will com back to you. Try to engender the feelings you would like to have in others and it may find it’s way back to you. Even if it doesn’t come back from the people you pass it too, it may come back in the way you feel about yourself.


Our self esteem is incredibly important. The way we feel about ourselves in one of the most important factors in our health and wellbeing. Don’t believe me? Things like loneliness have as big an impact on your life span as smoking, and if we don’t have good self esteem we can struggle with relationships and feelings of worth. Although it may seem like something you just have to do or not do, things are never that simple. Our subconscious mind can get some poor programming which can be corrected. If you struggle with self esteem, getting help from a hypnotherapist could be the best thing you ever do.

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Do your best

Have you ever done your best?

Have you ever tried as hard as you possibly can?

Have you done all of the preparation work that you possibly could?

Have you trained as hard as you could have?

Have you reread and rewritten your work enough?

Have you been focussed enough?

Have you tried every possible way to get it done?

Have you sought professional help or expertise?

Have you eliminated distractions?

Have you avoided all temptation?

Have you given it everything you’ve got?

Chances are that the answer is a big fat NO.

That’s OK.

(almost everyone else will say no to that too)

Stop beating yourself up. Accept that your not perfect and be a little nicer to yourself

There are, of course, exceptions – maybe you’re one of them – and if you are – Well Done.

I’m very impressed and all that but seriously – get a life!

Smile, relax, have fun, eat a cake, daydream, watch silly TV, make up stories in your head – it’s all really cool stuff 🙂

So maybe do your best, but then again, maybe don’t.

Try to be happy…

…but don’t try too hard!

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My Happy Jar

My Happy Jar

This is the latest post about my Happy Jar. It’s been a little while since I posted an update on this, but don’t worry there’s still plenty going in the jar 🙂

The Happy Jar is a way to look back and remember all the little things that make us happy.

The idea came from a nice story I once heard about a woman who had a jar. Every time she thought of something that made her happy, she would jot it down on a piece of paper and put it in the jar. Whenever she felt down, or fed up, she would go to her jar and find all the things that made her happy. Some things were big things, events that happened that she could look back on and smile, but most were little things that she could cherish and maybe even recreate to make her feel better.

So here are a few things from my Happy Jar this month.

A pink sunrise (yes I know, red sky in the morning – shepherds warning, but it’s still pretty)

Catching up with old friends at a house warming

Seeing friends happy – on a new journey, full of excitement and anticipation.

Fresh Blueberries in my porridge for breakfast.

A gift to myself being delivered.

The smell of freshly cut grass after it has rained.

Seeing my old dog act like a puppy when she finds a new walk.

Listening to an album I haven’t played in years (and still remembering the words).

Sprouting seeds.

Finding an old friend on social media.

Getting my nerd on with a friend.

Finding out that some amazing shoes I want actually come in my size (I’m 6ft tall and have size 9 feet)

Getting great feedback from a post

Getting caught in the rain and running for cover (then getting home and dry!)

Rediscovering a joy in drawing.

I know none of these things are amazing, there is nothing earth shattering about them, but all of them have made me smile and brought a least a little joy to my soul.

What will you put in your happy jar this month?

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How to influence people

My Job is to influence people.

I’m a Hypnotherapist and people pay me to influence the way they think and feel, so I’ve learned a few tricks along the way.

One of the least successful methods to get anyone to change is to tell them to, yet that seems to be what most people do most of the time.

Another thing people think will work is to explain things to people. They believe that if the other person just understands that what they are thinking/doing is wrong then they will change their behaviour. Unfortunately, this rarely works either. Take smoking for instance. We all know that smoking is damaging to us, and that we are likely to suffer ill health if we do it, yet there are still millions of smokers in the world. Telling them so stop doesn’t work. Explaining that it is bad for them doesn’t work. So what does?

Generally speaking, the best way of influencing someone (who isn’t hypnotised) is by leading by example.

If someone has a phobia of spiders there is a pretty good chance they were influenced into this way of thinking by someone close to them who was also scared of spiders. They saw this person freak out and subconsciously decided that this was a good way to react. Conversely if a person with an existing phobia is surrounded by people who are calm and relaxed around spiders, they may start to feel more relaxed themselves.

I had a client the other day who desperately wanted their partner to come for a hypnotherapy session with me. The partner was adamant that it wasn’t for them and refused point blank to even think about it. So my client booked 3 sessions with me to work on an issue she had. She went home after each session and told her partner how good it was making her feel and how much she was gaining from it. By the third session, he was asking if he could take her place.

When I was 11 years old I was told by a headmaster that the best piece of advice he could give me was to choose my friends wisely. It was a great piece of advice. Not only have my friends helped me through some difficult times and made good times better, but they have also influenced me. They have shaped my ideas and beliefs, they have led by example and I have learned so much from them. If I had chosen other friends, who knows where my life would have taken me. My advice to you would be to choose friends you respect. Choose friends you care about. Choose friends you want to be like.

If you want to influence someone be the example. Be their friend and show them by your words and more importantly your actions how good life can be. Show them what it is to be strong, caring, committed, healthy, reliable, responsible, fun, interesting and non judgemental. It may take some time, but you will be amazed at the impact it can have.

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Everyone said

Here’s my weekly poem – I hope you enjoy it

It Couldn’t Be Done

BY EDGAR ALBERT GUEST

Somebody said that it couldn’t be done
      But he with a chuckle replied
That “maybe it couldn’t,” but he would be one
      Who wouldn’t say so till he’d tried.
So he buckled right in with the trace of a grin
      On his face. If he worried he hid it.
He started to sing as he tackled the thing
      That couldn’t be done, and he did it!
Somebody scoffed: “Oh, you’ll never do that;
      At least no one ever has done it;”
But he took off his coat and he took off his hat
      And the first thing we knew he’d begun it.
With a lift of his chin and a bit of a grin,
      Without any doubting or quiddit,
He started to sing as he tackled the thing
      That couldn’t be done, and he did it.
There are thousands to tell you it cannot be done,
      There are thousands to prophesy failure,
There are thousands to point out to you one by one,
      The dangers that wait to assail you.
But just buckle in with a bit of a grin,
      Just take off your coat and go to it;
Just start in to sing as you tackle the thing
      That “cannot be done,” and you’ll do it.

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Count that day lost – George Elliot

Hi prose fans.

Here is a beautiful and poignant little poem from George Elliot.

If you sit down at set of sun
And count the acts that you have done,
And, counting, find
One self-denying deed, one word
That eased the heart of him who heard,
One glance most kind
That fell like sunshine where it went —
Then you may count that day well spent.

But if, through all the livelong day,
You’ve cheered no heart, by yea or nay —
If, through it all
You’ve nothing done that you can trace
That brought the sunshine to one face–
No act most small
That helped some soul and nothing cost —
Then count that day as worse than lost.

Try to never lose another day.

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FRIDAY GOOD NEWS STORY

good news

Jasper the dog found after social media campaign goes viral

Border Collie Jasper vanished on Sunday when out for a walk up Scafell Pike in the Lake District with his owner Adam Nolan.

Adam was desperate when Jasper went missing and posted on Facebook to alert people to keep an eye out for him if they were in the area. This got reposted thousands of times and people came from over 100 miles away to aid in the search.

Adam got up at dawn every day and searched until dark to no avail, but was joined by a mountain rescue team, helicopter, police and dog lovers who continued to search for him and he was found on Thursday at 2.00 a.m. when a mountain rescuer spotted his eyes by torch light. Jasper’s paws were bloodied from scrabbling around on the mountain so the rescuer, a man called Geoff Horky, carried him down to be reunited with Adam.

jasper

The love and devotion showed by Adam struck a chord with thousands of others who did what they could to help. Even after he was found this shining example motivated even more to generosity in donating to mountain rescue to help others who may need it in the future.

A JustGiving page set up by Mr Nolan to raise money for the rescue team had raised more than £25,000 by 19:00 GMT.

If you would like to support Mountain Rescue in the UK, please check out the link here to find out more.

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Positive Post-it Day

As you know I like to post good news stories on Fridays – I think we all need to focus on something wonderful at least once a week. This week I want to highlight the story of Caitlin. She was bullied at school and on facebook. She took this horrible experience and did something powerful and positive with it. This is a quote from her facebook page. 

“After being bullied in my school, I saw this idea on Pintrest about a school in the States who put Post Its all over there school and I decided that I wanted to take that stand against bullying as well. I bought over 800 post-it notes, wrote positive messages on them, and put them all over the school. My entire community, especially the Airdrie Moms, rallied together to make October 9th “Positive Post-It Day.” This community helped support and all cooperated together to make this day a huge success. A nationally celebrated day, we are preparing to continue the idea and post-it the world next year during the first Monday in October! This is a free way to show people you truly care about them! If you wish to donate, please feel free to donate to your local bulling initiatives.”

Don’t wait until next October – write down some positive things on some post it notes and leave them around your school, work, doctors office, bus stop, shop window – wherever you think people might need to feel a little better x

Here are some of the previous Friday good news stories you might like to visit

Magnificent Malala

That Friday Feeling

Lessons from an elephant with a blue ribbon

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Magnificent Malala

Malala-Yousafzai

Malala Yousafzai Inspires me more than I can say.

She won a Nobel Peace Prize last Friday for her “Struggle against the suppression of children” and her commitment to children’s rights around the world.

After surviving horrific and life-threatening gunshot wounds to the face by the Taliban just two years ago, the 17-year-old Pakistani girl took her fight for peace and gender equality to the world stage, and she was heard. The people that shot Malala wanted to scare young women away from being educated. What they ended up doing was giving an amazing girl the platform she needed to raise awareness and support to ensure that thousands more girls would get an education.

She created the Malala Fund which aims to empower girls everywhere. Her passion for education may have been influenced by her mother. Growing up Malala’s mother was never taught to read, something she is now remedying.

The Global Partnership for Education, which works in low-income countries to ensure basic education for all, has said that a grant from the Malala Fund would support the first-ever youth delegation at a world education conference in Brussels. Malala is quoted as saying “I believe all countries can do more.” At this year’s Clinton Global Initiative, Malala announced that her fund is pledging a $3 million multi year commitment, in partnership with Echidna Giving, toward education in developing countries, according to ABC News. Some of those funds will go toward a girls’ education summit this December.

As well as being a passionate advocate for education Malala has also become a global voice for the Nigerian girls abducted by Boko Haram. She urged the Nigerian President Mr Jonathan to meet with parents of the 219 schoolgirls kidnapped by the terrorist group, and further his commitment to bring the girls home safely. “My birthday wish this year is ‘Bring back our girls’ now and alive, Malala said.

At the start I wrote that I find Malal Yousafzai unbelievably inspiring. If you do too, why not make your Friday act of Kindness one which will help young women in education around the world. Support the Malala Fund or any other organisation that aims to give women the chance to learn, to educate themselves and to have lives that have choices and freedom.

I live in the UK. We can often think that there is injustice between how Men and Women are treated. There may be discrepancies between wages, there may be fewer women politicians and CEO’s than I would like and there may be institutionalised sexism in our forces and police, but we are fighting to change this. Take up the fight for equal rights for all – in the world, in your own country, in your own religion, in your own workplace and in your own home.

The size of these battles varies – fight the ones that make the most difference.

If you have daughters, nieces or granddaughters teach them how lucky they are to have a chance to do anything they want. Show them what an amazing gift an education is.

What they learn, now and for the rest of their lives, is their passport to opportunity.

Have a great weekend.

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World Mental Health Day 2014

wmhd

Today is World Mental Health Day.

This years aim is to highlight mental health and more specifically schizophrenia.

In the wake of the death of Robin Williams, the world became more open to talking about mental health and in particular depression. Unfortunately, research out this week shows that although attitudes have indeed significantly improved in the last few years, the stigma is still widespread. Nine of ten people with mental health problems say this has had a negative impact on their lives.

The easy test of this is that most of us would simply not feel as comfortable telling friends and family about having a mental health problem, as they would saying they had a physical illness.

For illnesses like bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, the stigma can be particularly stark. Research commissioned by Rethink Mental Illness found 65% of people would not tell their employer if they were diagnosed with schizophrenia. It’s hard to imagine the same proportion of people would keep a cancer diagnosis a secret.

Many people are now familiar with the often quoted statistic that 1 in 4 people will experience some kind of mental health problem in any given year. Whilst this is true, it doesn’t take into account that fact that we all have mental health that needs to be taken care of, in the same way we all have physical health. While most of us won’t develop a diagnosable mental health problem, our mental health will have ups and downs and we can all benefit from taking steps to protect our wellbeing. It also ignores the fact that the one in four people who are diagnosed have friends, family and colleagues who will be affected by this. In some way mental health issues affect us all.

This year, pledge to make a difference about mental health.

You can

  • choose to be more open about your own issues
  • choose to be more supportive to friends or family who suffer with these issues
  • choose to be an employer who is open about helping staff with mental health issues
  • choose to read and understand more about the issues that people face
  • choose to donate time or money to organisations who help people in these circumstances
  • choose to get help if you need it
  • choose to take care of your mental health to try to prevent problems occurring
  • choose to notice how things affect you and those around you.

What do you choose?

If you need to get help or want to help someone that is suffering there are many amazing organisations around the world who are willing and able to support you.

In the UK visit MIND or Rethink

In America visit Mental Health America

In Australia visit Mental Health Australia

I’ve added these links purely as examples of what is there. Please search in your local area and find a group or organisation who will give you the support you need and who in turn, you can support.

Wishing everyone out there a happy, healthy and Mentally Healthy weekend.

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