Those who’ve been through the doors of Clearbox will know there are fewer kinder souls in the world than Claire Best. With said kindness in mind, Bestie talks about kindness, paying it forward and generally doing good. Over to you, Best from the (Bangor) West.
Mark Twain once said, “Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.”
This quote got us thinking, about what kindness really is and how it can make you and the people around you feel. The simplest things can be considered kindness - smiling at a stranger, listening, spending time with someone, patience, tolerance…
With Random Acts of Kindness Day right around the corner on 17th February, it got us thinking about how kindness has impacted our lives at Clearbox, and how we like to pay it forward.
Interestingly, it has been proven that Random Acts of Kindness (RAOK) may help to improve your mental health. There is some evidence that helping others can be a positive way to work on your own worries and anxieties. While we aren't saying that a random act of kindness is a substitute for mental health treatment, it can help people feel better about themselves and those around them.
We asked some members of our team to recall their last RAOK, here are some of our tales of kindness:
Aside from the daily and ongoing acts of kindness from my friends, family and colleagues that I appreciate hugely, I always value kind drivers. People who stop to let others out without question is a lovely gesture. Someone did this for me earlier and I thought it was a very selfless act. On the other side of the coin, there are the people that go out of their way to cut others off and shut down fellow drivers. Often of a certain gender and driver of a certain vehicle but let’s not go there….
“My housemate Jonathan did a sink-full of dishes the other night. Sounds like a pretty normal household chore, but for me, it’s the little things that mean the most and I really appreciated it.”
“My dad filled up my car yesterday morning and had it warmed up waiting for me to get in and drive to work. Such a thoughtful gesture!”
“I was in a rush trying to get home because my mom was visiting from the States and I parked my car in front of a store she had asked me to go to. I wasn't aware that it was a ‘no park’ zone (new driver rookie mistake) and as I was heading back to my car, I saw a traffic warden starting to write a ticket for my car. I was so confused and when he pointed out I was in a no parking area. I was apologetic and asked when I should expect to receive the ticket. He looked and me and said “I didn't write the ticket, please pay attention next time.” I was so grateful and immediately went home and told my mom that we should all pay the good karma forward. It really made me reflect on how there are genuinely good people out there that understand we're just doing the best we can!”
“I always get a coffee every morning from Homebird (our wonderful local coffee establishment), and when I went in one day last week to get my usual, one of my beautiful teammates had already been in and paid for my coffee! Unexpected and lovely :)”
“Yesterday I came home to a totally unexpected bunch of flowers delivered to my house! It really made me smile. Jack (my boyfriend) also brought a flapjack into my office for me too, that was kinda random and cute!”
“Ballymena United being randomly brilliant this season. I’ve always loved going to watch those lads but when they’re beating all and sundry, it’s another level. Will we win the league this season? I’ve never uttered those words before in my life. Well, apart from relegation 20 odd years ago and winning the Championship to get back in the big time. Still can’t beat Coleraine though, which is massively annoying.”
As Claire Hamilton rightly pointed out, we should pay good karma forward. It’s what makes the world go round right? We’ve spoken before about our different packages at Clearbox, when you join the team, you can choose which one suits you best. The volunteer package is a popular one, with three paid days per year on offer to volunteer and help out a cause of your choice.
Clearboxers have supported a range of charities and causes both as part of the volunteer package and outside of working hours, including Young Enterprise Northern Ireland, Antrim Show, Abbeyfield, Tiny Life, and The Red Box Project NI.
As my son’s P1 teacher used to say to him, “When you do good, you feel good” and it’s true!