Sunday, 8 July 2012

Jon's One Million Acts of Kindness Review

Carlyn's final act of kindness for the actual million acts of kindness event may have been putting up with my crankiness over agreeing upon a new page design for our blog.  >.<  Her patience is legendary.

I really enjoyed the participating in the Million Acts of Kindness website.  Early on during the venture in the e-mail where I had asked about access to teammates profiles I also asked whether or not as an American living in New York, if my acts of kindness would be included in the total count.  I also asked that if they were, that they might be counted as part of the acts of kindness attributed to Carlyn's home state in Australia.  I was told they would be counted in the final tally, but they never really explained whether or not they would go to the credit of Carlyn's home state.  I was appreciative of the fact that they took the time to answer my e-mail in a timely fashion though. 

Originally I thought I had signed up to do two acts of kindness per day, but it had turned out that I had accidently put that I wanted to do two acts of kindness per week.  Due to my error, I ended up reaching my kind acts total goal by the beginning of the third week of the eight week program.  I was told that I could change my acts total, but was not able to find out where when I accessed the page I was directed to by the programs organizers.  None-the-less, I was undeterred in contiuing to try and perform two acts of kindness per day.  Sometimes I felt a bit of an obligation to do something extraordinary and therefore some of the more basic acts, such as complimenting someone or smiling at as many people as possible, were acts that I did, but did not count in my tally. 

I think that the acts of kindness/and or appreciation that I was able to do for friends and family were the most rewarding because of how much they all mean to me, but there was also something uniquely satisfying in doing kind acts for strangers.  Perhaps it was just that I was made more attentive to others through the whole process, but I really felt a kind of Kharmatic goodwill coming my way from strangers, while I was making a greater effort to be kind to others.  I also enjoyed doing acts of kindness for nature, in picking up garbage/litter around my work place and trying to reduce my energy footprint by being more concious of leaving lights on unneccessarily.

Unfortunately during the later part of week 5 into week 6 of the event I got sidetracked in recording my acts and failed to record acts for the remainder of the 8 week event.  I still made the effort to do at least two acts per day, but I was part of the wedding party at my best friend's wedding and then went away on vacation with my family to celebrate my mother's 70th birthday.  I was away from the computer for about 7-8 days and when I got back I simply did not back log all the acts I did while I was away.  The irony being that I probably did more acts after I stopped recording them. 

All in all it was a completely worthwhile event and I would be happy to participate in it once again next year, and hope that some of the aspects of the site that Carlyn mentioned could be improved upon might come to be in the future. 

- Jon Bear

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