By Julie Leonard
Just after the US presidential elections I was chatting with an American friend of mine and he told me he had felt so despondent after the election. In fact he told me he had gone into a depression for a couple of weeks. As we spoke I told him that I had liked the hashtag #lovetrumpshate and how it had inspired me to think about creating a campaign, a kindness movement in 2017.
This in turn triggered a memory of when I was at uni and my best friend nicknamed me Julie ‘Love’ Leonard as even waaayy back then I felt so strongly that one person can make a difference.
And just before Christmas I had the immense pleasure of hearing Jane Goodall speak at the Tollwood Festival and she so succinctly and eloquently brought together all the thoughts I had been throwing around in my mind and she was so inspirational in what she has achieved with her own humanitarian projects. She is 80 years old and travels 300 days of the year to deliver her talks!
And I believe more than ever in 2017 with Trump and Brexit and so much hatred, racism, misogyny and fear that it is time we start to be even kinder to ourselves, to our partners, our children, friends, family and strangers. It’s time to spread kindness and love and I do believe that love can ultimately win over hate.
So how can we be kinder in 2017?
- Be More Mindful. By being more present and conscious of our thoughts and actions we can choose to be more kind to people in how we speak to them and act towards them.
- Continue with the acts of kindness we did in December. Remember how it made you feel to perform little acts of kindness every day? And the response you got from others when you were kind? Reuse the ideas from December, add your own and continue making random acts of kindness.
- Join a kindness challenge. There are many challenges out there such as the Advent Calendar or the Kinder Scotland challenge via Kindspring. Or why not create your own challenge and invite Über Moms and friends and family to join.
- Donate to charity. There are so many worthy causes out there, big and small, local and national and International. One’s like Lia Edwards’s wonderful Dressember or the simple collecting of stamps for a charity selected by Über Moms or donate to the local refugee centre.
- Volunteer with charity. There are so many ways to get involved and help others. Why not support refugees or transform some community green spaces or walk dogs in the local shelter.
- Create (or join) a movement. Social media has changed how we can mobilise people into action and make large and small changes in people’s lives. Change.org and Justgiving are two examples where ordinary people can make a difference. Find a cause you are passionate about and join or create your own.
Join my Kindness Movement
So here’s my idea. In the next few weeks I will be creating an event where we will go through a small course together that will help us identify the movement we want to create. Then, via Jane Goodall’s project Roots and Shoots we will set up our kindness movement. Who’s interested in joining me? I’d love to have you on board. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Together we can make a difference!
Julie Leonard is a Life Coach, De-Cluttering Expert and Aromatherapist who is passionate about Happiness and supporting women to transform their lives and live to their potential. Über Moms enjoy a discount on all life coaching sessions.
Julie has also just launched her new Aromatherapy massage service in January. More info at http://www.potentiacentre.com