30 days of kindness project

Last Christmas season I decided that where ever I went I was going to try to be extra kind. I would let people go in line in front of me. I would buy the person behind me in the Starbuck’s line a cup of coffee, I would help strangers in tough situations. I thought that would make everything seem merry and bright. Actually, what I found was more nasty acting people than I’d ever discovered before. People walk around really grumpy at Christmastime. Everyone is in a hurry and broke.

So I had an idea.

I’m going to do a little experiment and I have a hypothesis, as all good experimenters do. I hypothesize that I will be more affected by my experiment than anyone I meet.

For 30 days, all of December, I am going to go out of my way to do something nice for a stranger. I’m calling it my 30 days of kindness. I’m a little concerned about the 25th, so that is why I didn’t say 31 days. I might have to take that day off because I doubt I see any strangers. I’ll be doing lots of kind things for my not strangers. (Here’s a side note about “strangers.” For the purpose of this project strangers are any one I don’t know. I tell my kids that “strangers” do strange things. So not EVERYONE is a stranger and I don’t subscribe to the “stranger danger” mentality. I’ll write about that one of these days.)

Every day, I’ll come home and blog about my experience. I’ll take pictures if I can. We’ll see if people are nice back, if being good brings goodness in some round about way. Or, if I meet tons of grumpy people that have no interest in having someone be kind to them. I’m super worried about this personal challenge I’m giving myself because actually, I don’t go out a whole lot. I don’t have a car every day or a reason to leave. So, this is truly going to be a stretch. Also, what am I going to do? Go to target everyday? People there are the same caught up in themselves and their own version of Merry Christmas or “Happy Holidays” that I experienced last year. So, I might not get any different results.

Wait…new idea…I’ll make this a little more interesting. How about YOU suggest where I should go and what I should attempt to do (safely and in Wichita.) I’ll try some of your ideas along with my own. Comment here on the blog so everyone can see.

Let’s get this party started.



  • Diana Mikels

    November 29, 2015 at 8:09 pm Reply

    Oh Carrie, I think you are very creative, and considerate. Being a good role model for your girls explains their own wonderful and considerate characteristics. 🙂 You have probably considered anything I could suggest. This seems to be the time of year for us to become more aware of some small acts of kindness. We strive to do so not for any reward, but in all humbleness. Looking back through the year, though not often, I’ve realized that we do small acts of kindness in ways we don’t really realize at the time. Becoming aware and wanting to do something a little extra is the challenge. Letting someone in front of you in line, letting someone in front of you when leaving a store because you and you son walk too slow…or just buying someone something hot to warm them because they are working in the cold. Smiling at people even if they don’t smile back. All of these things can fall in the everydays of our life. 🙂 Still we want to be more creative this time of year. One that I’ve been trying to do lately is compliment a stranger about how pretty they smile. something they are wearing, how becoming their hairstyle may be, anything that may come to mind. I never imagine how tickled a neighbor would be over one string of Christmas light. After they thanked me and closed the door I heard laughter, and words of excitement. 🙂 Doing some little thing for a neighbor you may not know well and may not speak too often may brighten their day more than we realize. You’re right, and I believe we are more affected by the experience than those we meet. God blesses our soul in the moment, and that is so much more rewarding for He can’t be matched. I hope this was helpful. 🙂 I love you and continue to lift you, Luke, and all those great nieces in my prayers. <3 Merry Christmas! <3

    • Carrie Catlin

      November 29, 2015 at 9:15 pm Reply

      Great ideas! I think I’ll get coffee or hot cocoa for the bell ringers! Thanks!

  • Diane Reitz

    November 30, 2015 at 10:16 am Reply

    One that just popped in my head was taking a flower or small gift to someone in the hospital or nursing home. Cookies to your bank tellers. Compliment a young mother on her well behaved children (they need to hear encouragement) Slip a thank you note to your postal carrier. If you have a day when you don’t leave home, pick up the phone, call someone who is in public service to thank them and wish them a Merry Christmas! Or write a letter of appreciation to a service person. I look forward to seeing many more ideas and also to reading your results. You are an inspiration!!! It only takes one person like you to start a pay it forward revolution! 🙂

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