I posted around this time last year about being the child of parents who survived on debt. It was a look back over my childhood and realizing that children don’t always take on the same habits and tendencies as their parents. Instead, they can learn from them and develop good habits of their own.
However, this year I find myself thinking of the traits and habits that did rub off on me. Even though my parents weren’t the greatest role models for budgeting and money management, they set the bar high when it came to thinking of others and demonstrating kindness.
The best part about it is that their kindness didn’t come in the form of grand gestures or big gifts. It was in the small things that they did for others as they went about their day-to-day activities. Simple things that we all probably take for granted, like:
- Holding a door open for someone
- Picking up someone else’s litter
- Letting someone go ahead of them in line
- Helping someone across a slippery patch of ice
- Putting a neglected loose cart away at the grocery store
- Putting change in donation jars at local retailers
- Or even simply smiling at someone, or saying “hello”
Now, as an adult, I find myself doing similar types of small, kind acts for others. And more importantly, as a parent, I hope that my kids will watch, learn, and choose to be generous in their own small, random acts of kindness.