We celebrate Random Acts of Kindness Week from February 14 to February 20 annually. It’s a celebration of all the ways we can become a positive influence in each other’s lives. Even one small act of kindness can mean a great deal to somebody. The world can be selfish and cruel sometimes and not everyone receives the same kind of support they need. In such a world, it is important for us to constantly be reminded to be kind to one another and to give others hope whenever we can. A small and random gesture of kindness can go a long way.
History of Random Acts of Kindness Week
A random act of kindness is in most cases, a non-organized and spontaneous gesture of kindness towards someone who needs it. The phrase “practice random kindness and senseless acts of beauty” was coined by Anne Herbert in 1982. It was a response to another phrase about random acts of violence and senseless acts of cruelty — and written with the aim of putting an end to violence. Herbert wrote it first on a placemat in Sausalito, California and it eventually turned into a children’s book called “Random Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty” that was published in February 1993.
Other authors and artists, including Margaret Paloma Pavel and Mayumi Oda, also contributed to the work. The book carried beautiful stories along with vibrant illustrations. The stories are filled with creative and empowering messages about world peace. The overarching message of the book is that every individual can choose to become an agent of goodness and beauty.
In the year 2002, humorist Danny Wallace wrote a book called “Join Me,” which talks about the accidental cult the author started in order to initiate positive change. The members of the cult were called ‘Joinees’ and the cult itself was called ‘KarmaArmy’. Their responsibility was to carry out random acts of kindness, specifically on Fridays. These Fridays were called ‘Good Fridays’.
We have also encountered this term in pop culture. The 2007 film “Evan Almighty” concludes with God telling Evan, the main character, that the only way to transform the world is by doing one Act of Random Kindness (ARK) at a time.
Another author, Karen McCombie also published a book in 2009 called “The Seventeen Secrets of the Karma Club.” This centers around the attempts of two girls to practice random acts of kindness anonymously through their secret group called ‘The Karma Club.’
Random Acts of Kindness Week timeline
Herbert writes the phrase "practice random kindness and senseless acts of beauty" on a placemat as a response to another phrase that talked about "random acts of violence and senseless acts of cruelty."
Herbert’s phrase eventually turns into a wholesome storybook called “Random Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty” authored by Herbert and Margaret Paloma Pavel, and illustrated by Mayumi Oda.
Wallace publishes a book called “Join Me,” which talks about his accidental cult called the ‘KarmaArmy’ and their efforts to initiate positive change in the world.
Viewers are introduced to ‘ARKs’ or ‘Acts of Random Kindness’ when God tells Evan that the only way to change the world is by doing one Act of Random Kindness at a time.
Random Acts of Kindness Week FAQs
What is Random Act of Kindness Day?
Random Act of Kindness Day is celebrated on February 17 every year. It falls within Random Act of Kindness Week.
How do you celebrate Random Acts of Kindness Week?
There are many ways to show kindness. Sending small compliments or even an uplifting message to someone can go a long way.
When is World Kindness Day celebrated?
World Kindness Day is celebrated on November 13 every year. This day was introduced by the World Kindness Movement in 1998.
Random Acts of Kindness Week Activities
Practice a random act of kindness
Your kindness might make a world of difference to somebody. This is the best week for you to show your support for the cause and help out someone in need.
Read a wholesome story
Anne Herbert’s children’s book “Random Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty” is the book that started it all. Read her beautiful stories about how a single being can help change others’ lives.
Encourage others to spread kindness by talking about this week on social media or in their circle of friends. The more people who get behind the kindness cause, the more we can do to change the world.
5 Fascinating Facts About Kindness
Kindness gets rid of stress
People who are naturally kind have 23% less cortisol, which is the stress hormone.
Being kind increases stamina
In a research study, 50% of the participants reported that they felt stronger and more energetic after helping people.
Being kind can reduce your blood pressure
Dr. David Hamilton claims that practicing acts of kindness helps release a hormone known as oxytocin, which protects the heart by reducing blood pressure.
Kindness stabilizes our mood
It stimulates the production of serotonin, which is basically a mood stabilizer.
Being kind makes us happy
Performing an act of kindness triggers elevated levels of dopamine in the brain and a natural high is produced, often referred to as ‘helper’s high.’
Why We Love Random Acts of Kindness Week
Kindness is an important character trait
Being kind is an essential personality trait that can help you build strong and healthy relationships. It also makes our lives more hopeful and meaningful.
Kindness boosts morale
Acts of kindness improve self-esteem. Being a source of support for someone else also motivates you to keep striving.
Kindness creates a positive impact on our lives
Kindness affects a person’s overall well-being. It gives them a sense of purpose and helps them cater to the needs of others.
Random Acts of Kindness Week dates