About The Kindness Project
Too often kindness is relegated to a random act performed only when we’re feeling good. But an even greater kindness (to ourselves and others) occurs when we reach out even when we aren't feeling entirely whole . It’s not easy, and no one is perfect. But we’ve decided it’s not impossible to brighten the world one smile, one kind word, one blog post at a time. To that end, a few of us writers have established The Kindness Project, starting with a series of inspirational posts.
The other day my friend Liz told me about the Kindness Project, and it seemed like the universe answering a question I hadn't yet asked out loud. I knew I had to join.
Because lately I've been thinking about how even small things make a big difference. On the Internet, it's really easy to forget how many people you come in contact with every day. I don't usually think about how my actions affect other people, but I've certainly noticed how other people's actions affect mine.
For example, I read The Bloggess's blog and bought her book. It's funny and sad and awesome. You should read it. I follow her on Twitter, and occasionally reply to her tweets. A few weeks ago, she started to follow me. I was blown away. One of my writing heroes was following little old me on Twitter.
Then just Sunday, I posted a comment on James Scott Bell's blog asking about writing a road trip novel. He very kindly replied within a few hours, despite his ridiculously busy schedule. I've been through Plot and Structure so many times I've had to buy a second copy, and my copy of Conflict and Suspense is already showing the love. It meant a lot to me, that another one of my personal heroes took the time to reply to my question.
These are just two very small examples of how a small thing can have a big impact. I am sure both The Bloggess and Mr. Bell see themselves as regular people going through their daily motions. I'm sure they didn't know how highly I think of them, considering I try to keep my Internet stalking to a bare minimum. But that small gesture completely made my day.
I've got to be honest here. Most of the time I don't consider my Internet dealings as a big deal. I am just a tiny, tiny fish in a very big ocean. I send out my tweets and posts because I enjoy doing those things, but I assume that they're going to be largely unread. When I read a blog post, and see that fifteen people have already commented, I think my own comment isn't that important.
But I'm wrong.
When people leave comments on my posts, it makes me inordinately happy, so why wouldn't the reciprocal be true? It does matter, and for me to assume that it doesn't...well, that's just sad when I really think about it. Words and actions have power, and mine are no different. In fact, part of the reason why I am a writer is because I believe words have power.
From now on I'm going to be more mindful of my actions, and I hope you will too. You never know what something might mean to another person, and after all, isn't that why we're on the Internet? To make a connection?
Please check out the other wonderful people in this blog chain and spread the word.