Summer of Self Care – Day 24

Random Act of Kindness (RAK)

Have you ever been the recipient of someone else’s kindness and been immediately uplifted? How about being the one delivering the RAK to someone else?

Kindness is something we all appreciate and sometimes we crave ways in which we can get out of our own heads and do something nice for others.

The act of delivering a kindness to someone spontaneously or anonymously – especially when we don’t know who will receive it – can be amazing.

Years ago, I participated in the Book Crossing project  where you leave a book for someone and it’s tracked via journals from around the world. Pretty complex to set up, but very fun.

My neighbor had business cards made up that say YOU MATTER. She gives them out randomly to people she thinks need them in that moment. It’s one of the things I keep in my desk and every time I see it, I think of her and the joy she brings through her messages to others.

You can leave a book, a note, a flower, a gift card for a cup of coffee or whatever suits your fancy. I also love handwritten cards left in places where someone will be sure to find them. Or pop something lovely in the mail to someone who is least expecting a RAK.

Random Acts of Kindness bless the giver as well as the receiver. It makes you feel happy, which releases endorphins and promotes self care for both of you.

Today’s prompt is to engage in a small Random Act of Kindness. Comment and let me know what your RAK turned out to be!

Summer of Self Care – Day 23

Comfort Bag

My family sometimes laughs at me because I put together a bag of things whenever I am leaving home for the day, weekend or longer. I often over pack and take more things than I really need. When arriving to spend the day with my granddaughters, my son often teases me and asks, “how many bags did you bring today?” I often have a lunch bag, a work bag and a bag of things I wanted to have with me – a bag I call My Comfort Bag.

Sometimes my Comfort Bag includes a book, a tablet, some snacks, a coloring book or activity to do with the girls, essential oils, an ipod and a magazine. Yes, that’s more than I need for the day, but it brings me comfort to have it all with me. And I’m never sure what I will want to reach for first.

Once I recommended a Comfort Bag to a friend who was headed to a funeral. She was obviously experiencing sadness over the loss of the family member, but she was also feeling stressed at the thought of being with family she hadn’t seen and didn’t always feel comfortable around.

We came up with a list of items to include in her Comfort Bag – a journal, emails of friends who would support her, healthy snacks, a picture with her and her loved one in happier times, lavender and a soft blanket for the plane and the hotel room.

If you’re a caregiver or travel often, you may want to keep a Comfort Bag packed and always ready. If you’re stressed about something, you may want your Comfort Bag with you daily.

Today, maybe spend a few moments thinking about what you would include in your Comfort Bag and then start pulling those together or duplicating them if they are things you use every day.

The more prepared you are for self care, the more you will benefit from your effort.