I was not really keen on sharing the acts of kindness I or our family have done in the past because it seems egoistic and takes away the randomness and sincerity of it all, but the following quote from 'Do I Smell Smoke?' (one of Dr. Barret's blog posts) prompted me to do so.
"Every giving action doesn’t have to be revealed. But some should. I also felt that by telling others it sheds light on a particular problem. It also nudges others to take action. Perhaps next time someone else will remember what she did and feel encouraged and strengthened to take action themselves."
So, I'm sharing a few random acts of kindness we've done (and still do) that we feel might be a source of inspiration to others.
1. In 2008, we met an old-time friend who was a stay-at-home Mom. We then learned that she was being abused by her husband, but due to her personal circumstances, she couldn't just leave. We thought that the best help we could give is an opportunity for her to bring her self-worth back. Thus, my husband gave his job to her. (She recently sent us a message saying she was doing ok and that she'd be forever grateful for the help we extended her).
2. We tithe. Usually, it's 10% of our income (And trust us, we're both unemployed ... funny, but true. But come to think of it, we always managed. We even had the chance to travel recently to US ... lol). Each time we get monetary benefits, we take 10% of it and put it in a separate fund already so it doesn't feel like it's ours to spend. That way, it's easier for us to 'Give Away $1 a Day', an idea we learned shortly after we've discovered 'The Secret', and which was also suggested by Dr. Joe Vitale in his program 'The Secret to Attracting Money'. We would randomly leave $1 in subways, restaurants and other public places and praying that whoever finds it will be blessed abundantly. The rationale behind this idea is that you are randomly giving happiness or joy to the person finding it, just like how you felt as a child when you accidentally finds a penny on the ground. Some other portions of our 10% also go to our favorite charities and organizations.
3. There was one day in NY when we were financially blessed that we decided to give not just $1 but $5. We put $5 each in an envelope with a note saying 'Pay it forward by doing a random act of kindness as well like share a smile, offer a seat, call a friend, etc." We then asked our 5-yr old daughter to hand the envelopes out to strangers as we passed them by in NY (Time Square) and in Detroit airport. We also gave away our bus tickets to La Guardia airport that day to 2 other strangers (in my blog Super Jet Lag).
Joyful giving is the 'The Greatest Money-Making Secret in History' (that's the title of a book by Dr. Joe Vitale (free download link is on my blogpost 1 Neat Freebie For You). That book had totally changed my view on Giving. Whereas before, I felt trapped in the emotion of guilt and obligation when I tithe to Church or give monetary help to those in need. Now, I just give joyfully to whomever gives me inspiration spiritually or otherwise. Dr. Joe Vitale also pointed out that you get more of what you give away. So, if you give away books or clothes, then you get more books and clothes. But if you wanna be financially abundant, then give away money to those who have inspired you the most, at the same time opening your heart to great expectation that it will be returned to you a hundred fold through sources other than your recipient.