photo of a person's hands clasped in the shape of a heart
(Photo/ CC0)

10 suggestions for Random Acts of Kindness Week

Sign up for Weekday J and get the latest on what's happening in the Jewish Bay Area.

Sometimes we forget the impact that acts of kindness have. It can be easy to discount them; a simple smile or a genuine “How are you?” can feel insignificant. But the significance of kind acts should not be disregarded.

You never know what someone is going through or when someone is having a rough time, and your kind act will leave them feeling cared for and warm inside. Maybe your action will grant them a bright moment amid a dark, stressful time. Maybe your demonstration of compassion will change the course of their day, making a bad day better or a good day even better. And maybe your loving-kindness will stick with them. Maybe they’ll pay it forward, wanting someone to experience the same cared-for feeling. Maybe, then, what began as your kind act will ripple outward. Regardless of the extent to which your kind act impacts others, it’s bound to do some good.

The Jewish concept of gemilut hasadim (acts of loving-kindness) encapsulates this idea perfectly. This key Jewish value underlies a bevy of interpersonal mitzvot.

RELATED: Acts of kindness are good for your health

Sometimes we find ourselves caught up in the busyness of life. and acts of kindness can get overlooked or become less intentional. So sometimes we need a reminder to engage actively in our acts of kindness.

This week, with Random Acts of Kindness Day coming up on Friday, Feb. 17, consider taking the time to do an intentional act of kindness.

I and other members of the Kindness Club at Kehillah Jewish High School in Palo Alto aspire to embody the week’s spirit by engaging fellow students in activities to help and uplift others. So, if you’re not sure where to start or you want some ideas, consider our 10 suggestions:

1. Wish someone a good day

2. Compliment someone

3. Tell someone how much they mean to you

4. Send a friend an uplifting message

5. Thank your mail carrier

6. Give a loved one a warming cup of tea or cocoa

7. Surprise someone you know with a thoughtful note and their favorite treat

8. Pick up trash in your community

9. Drop off or help serve food at your local food bank or soup kitchen

10. Donate time or money to a cause dear to you (such as helping those affected by the recent earthquake in Turkey and Syria)

Karen Glenn
Karen Glenn

Karen Glenn is an 11th-grader at Kehillah Jewish High School in Palo Alto.