Reveal: Kindness Challenge!

As promised, here is the post with the details on the challenge. In this post I explained that when I reached 500 followers I wanted to start a challenge. The focus of this challenge is kindness.

I think we get enough bad news from the media and even drama in our lives or the lives of those around us. One thing that I have noticed is that by switching my focus, things have changed. When I watched the news I always focused on negative things and my attention was consumed by negative things my peers, coworkers and acquaintances talked about.

Over the past two years I’ve been making a conscious effort to focus on the good things in life. That’s not to say that I’m not aware of my surroundings or that I’m not empathetic. I’m just trying to attract what I want, so I make myself find the good in every situation. In the spirit of gratitude for the 500 people that chose to follow my blog, I couldn’t think of a more appropriate challenge than one of focusing on kindness.

I originally intended for this to be a week long challenge but I thought about it. It has taken me two years to get to the point that I’m at. While a week is nice, I don’t think it’s long enough to make the lasting change I’m hoping it will in your life.

The blog part of the challenge will only be one post for each week so that it doesn’t hinder you from participating. There are no rules for the post, you can make it as long or short as you want. Capture a photo of a moment, write a poem or a song, the reflection of the week is up to you. Just post about it at the end of the week.

Please spread the word. I want as many people as possible to be aware of this and participate. If you can shift your thoughts, you can shift your perspective and your attitude. Let’s do our part to make the world around us a kinder place.

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To help you kick-start shifting your focus towards looking for positive things around you, I encourage you to check out this website I discovered while trying to find the international day of kindness. It’s not until the end of the year and I don’t want to wait that long to start my challenge, but it did bring me to this website dedicated to random acts of kindness!

What do you think about this challenge? Will you sign up for it? Do you think it will work? Have you ever tried something like this before? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.

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Sign up for the challenge here.

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28 thoughts on “Reveal: Kindness Challenge!

  1. Awesome idea, Niki! Would love to participate! I’ve never done a challenge before, I have no idea how it works, but as I understand there should be a weekly post about it. Can you give specific details about it, like do we insert a certain link or picture to the post? Thanks!
    Also congratulations on your milestone, I love the fact that you celebrate them in such a creative way!

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    1. Hi Iona! I’m so excited to hear that! Yes, there will be more specific details in another post. This one was just getting too long, so I decided to do a reveal post and then I’ll do a post with more details later on this week. I want to start spreading the word because with the A-Z Challenge going on it could be the worst time or the best time, we’ll find out 😉

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      1. For me it’s the best time. I’m turning 30 in July and it won’t be so much about the drama as it’ll be about achievements, so can’t wait to be enlightened by this challenge 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      2. That is an awesome way to look at it! It’s funny because when I looked at the dates on the calendar this runs roughly from Mother’s Day to Father’s Day and I don’t know why but I was like this is perfect! I’m excited for what will be a beautiful and hopefully life changing experience for you. No good change is too small 🙂

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    1. I’m so happy that you’ve already done something like this! While it does count for you and your amazing journey, it doesn’t “count” for this. This is going to be a journey that we go on together and post our experiences and feelings after focusing on specific things. I don’t intend for this to be difficult or to take up a lot of time. I’d love for you to join us on this journey and reflect on it. Just one post a week, more details to come!

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  2. Kindness has changed not only my life, but the life of my family. I come from an abusive childhood; I didn’t know how to parent from a place of kindness and joy. When my children were 4 and 7, though, I began to learn.

    Today, I’m the mom of a 14 year old son half a head taller than me, who will still hug me in public, and doesn’t get why anyone would think that wasn’t cool. I’m also the mom of a girl blossoming into womanhood before my eyes, who, at not quite 12, tells me that I’m her friend and she likes spending time with me.

    It’s a very different life than the one we were headed for – one where parents and teens are on opposite sides, with little common ground, and life becomes something of a war zone of adults trying to control almost adults who’ve had way too much of that already in their lives…

    Kindness saved my family. My happy, kind big kids will be heading out into the world in just a few short years, and they will make a difference with the vibrancy kindness has given them. Are we Pollyannas, or pushovers to our kids? Nope. We aren’t afraid to tell them when they’ve made a mistake, or to admit our own. We talk about bigger issues, but we choose to focus on the positive, rather than feeding our energy to the negative.

    I will join the challenge, because I love the idea! =D

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, thank you for sharing your story. I can relate to it on many levels. I too struggle with parenting from a place of kindness for reasons much like your own. There are days that I fall into old habits or resort to tactics I didn’t like or appreciate as a child but those times are minimal and I usually catch myself in the heat of the moment, remove myself from the situation, apologize and handle the situation better from that point. I’m a work in progress but I can definitely see the benefits of being a kind parent because my girls are so full of love and happiness that anything else is foreign to them. I can’t wait to see where this challenge takes your writing!

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      1. For a long time after I changed, the kids would say, “Back when you were a mean mommy.” That broke my heart, because I hadn’t meant to be mean, and I knew I had broken them, in the process.

        Love and kindness can fix so much. I almost never yell anymore – it’s gotten to the point where my even raising my voice seems like yelling, to the kids, because it’s not common. As we’ve gone along this path, I’ve had to learn how to actually communicate with them as people with minds and wills of their own, and I’ve had to let go of some things – like the hours they might have spent in school, or the idea of bedtimes, or “laying down the law”. Our family principle is “Everybody gets to be safe and happy.” No need to punish, just discuss the times when that doesn’t happen, and how we can make it better.

        I’m a work in progress, too, and both children are growing and changing so fast that sometimes it makes my head spin (and I’m RIGHT HERE with them, so it’s even more surprising!) But the thing about parenting kindly is that my kids both tend to forgive me my mistakes, and accept that I’m human, and I make some, just like they do.

        Oh, and because they know their parents are on their side, willing to help them make their dreams come true to the extent we’re able, they tend to listen if I tell them I think something isn’t a good idea. As they navigate toward adulthood, and the stakes get higher, that’s very reassuring.

        Making the change was the hardest and most rewarding thing I’ve done in my life – for the kids, for the marriage, for me – and hopefully also for those my words touch.

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      2. Awww the mean mommy comment is heartbreaking. The good thing is that you have changed because some people don’t realize it until much later if at all. I remember my daughter giving me a look after I yelled at her once and that look took me straight to my childhood and I saw all of the same emotions in that look that I felt. I knew right then and there I was not going to be that parent. It was so hard to change because I didn’t know anything else. As a kid I always remember thinking what DIDN’T want to do or be as a parent, I didn’t realize my focus should have been on what I DID want to be because for the first 4 years I was exactly what I didn’t want to be. Just thinking about it makes me feel horrible. It saddens me to know that I made my daughter feel the very things I wanted to protect her from. I’m glad that I was able to start the process early. While she does still remember, I don’t think it’s something that she harbors. She will tell me every now and then that she remembers when I used to talk in my mean voice a lot and I’m so glad that isn’t the norm and is less with each passing day. Thank you so much for your honesty, I know it’s not pleasant to see who we used to be but it’s nice to see we are no longer at that point 🙂

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      3. My kids have had interactions with my family of origin that have made it pretty clear that I had a loong way to go to learn kindness. They’ve been patient with me, and I’m honest with them when I don’t think I live up to my standards. I encourage them to call me on things they think I haven’t been fair about.

        I used to feel horrible about those early years, especially for my son, because he was 7, and, even now, that’s half his life I was, as my Accomplice once said upon coming home to find me screaming at our little, little children, “a monster”.

        But then someone pointed out that there’s nothing I can do to UNdo that, but punishing myself for it was just adding negative energy to it, rather than looking at how good things are now, and how much better I can make them.

        I don’t know how old your girls are, but I’m becoming very aware that my children are both a lot closer to being adults than they are to being babies, now. I don’t have all that much more time before they aren’t legally my responsibility, and I would so much rather focus on granting them joy, freedom, and the chance to learn the things they need to know for the next stages of their lives. When I feel a pang of regret for that younger me who was sometimes cruel, I apologize and do something sweet.

        And I think that maybe there’s a hidden treasure in moms like us who didn’t always get it right. Think of what it says to our children that their moms could make so huge a change. Doesn’t that show them that it’s possible? That, if they ever find their lives going in a direction they don’t want, they can maybe do that too, even if it’s the hardest thing they ever do?

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      4. That is a great perspective to have and a great reminder. I am one to beat myself up, getting better about it but when it comes to my kids I’m a lot harder on myself. Mine are 7 and 1, the 1 year old doesn’t know me any other way. My 7 year old remembers but is very forgiving. I think my family dynamic mirrors yours quite a bit. My husband and I don’t try to be rulers or dictators. We try to have open conversations and treat the girls like the little people they are. Reason and help them understand, I started to say within their capacity but I’ve learned they are capable of understanding things in a way I as an adult can’t even understand at times. I needed this today because I have been getting frustrated with my 7 year old but I know now what it is that she needs, so thank you for engaging in this conversation.

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      5. Happy to do it. Frustration happens. There are a lot of hormones around here these days. Having kind parents doesn’t take away the fact that growing up is a rather chaotic process, and sometimes the hormones surge with no warning at all. Add to that a menopausal Mom who is dealing with her own hormonal changes – but I tend to think of those times like pop up storms. They come, they go, and maybe they’re needed for growth and clarity. But disagreements are part of life – it’s the way they’re dealt with that makes the difference.

        One of my favorite things in the world is hanging around very small people who have been gently parented their whole lives. They’re so much different than any toddlers I ever knew before. They don’t spend all their time looking at the adults around them, waiting to be told “No!” or “Stop!” They LIVE, and it’s a wondrous thing to behold. And I totally know what you mean about the way kids can understand things. Most adults give kids far too little credit for understanding.

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      6. Very true, I love the perspective and clarity I’ve gained from our conversations all over the blogosphere today 😉 We need to be more like those toddlers and just live! I want to be like them when I grow up 😉

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      7. You said it! I want to be like a toddler when I grow up, too (or, should I say, if I grow up…)

        I’ve loved chatting with you, but, if I don’t put this computer down soon, I’m going to fall asleep on it! May you have a lovely, not-frustrating week!

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      8. Fortunately, I care more about how the house looks than anyone else does (and I seem not to be as concerned about it when times of creative intensity occur). I’ve done some basics, and gotten out in the yard to enjoy some springtime, but, mostly, I’ve been learning and writing. Sorry I didn’t get back to you sooner; sometimes I disappear into the Other Things!

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