Be Kind to the Person Right in Front of You – #RTOK

by Jennifer Miller on March 6, 2017

in Social Media

Kindness is free, but sometimes we act as if it’s a rare treasure to hoard. Or, we think small actions won’t make a difference. We’re wrong on both counts.

The act of kindness costs nothing but a few moments of time and it reaps huge dividends. The size of the gesture is less important than the loving intent behind it. Leigh Anne and Sean Touhy (whose life was featured in the movie The Blind Side) have a theory which they call The Popcorn Theory. It goes like this: You can’t help everyone. But you can try to help the hot ones who pop right up in front of your face.

In their memoir In a Heartbeat: Sharing the Power of Cheerful Giving, they write, “Too often, we think we lack the means to improve someone’s lot. We’re wrong. The Popcorn Theory doesn’t oblige all of us to write impressively large checks or take in every hungry child with a face like a flame. It only requires that we perceive the person standing right in front of us.”

A couple weeks ago my colleague China Gorman invited me to an event called Random Tweets of Kindness. It was started in 2013 by Lars Schmidt, a guy who felt we all could use a reminder to be kind to everyone. He bills this event (which happens via Twitter—and, if you choose—in real life) as a “modest effort to spend a day focused on gratitude and public thanks.”

Random Tweets of Kindness is on March 8, 2017. If you’re on Twitter, give a shout-out to people who you’d like to thank publicly for the ways they have made a positive difference in your life. Use the hashtag #RTOK.

Not on Twitter? Send a note (or a Snap or tag them on Facebook). Or tell them personally.

Whatever way you decide to reach out, just do it. As the Touhys remind us, it doesn’t have to be a grand gesture. But for you to make a difference, you need to take action.

Want to know more about Random Tweets of Kindness? Go to the Facebook page for details.

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