Opt for Optimism: Join me in Spreading Kindness through Self-Love
posted on February 11, 2020 | by Amanda Holstein
I’m going to tell you a secret about life. One that you’ll begin to notice everywhere now that I’ve told you. Here it is: the way we treat others is a reflection of the way we treat ourselves. Think about it — when you’re in a bad mood and taking it out on others, aren’t you usually being even harder on yourself? Or say someone treats you poorly for no apparent reason. It’s likely their internal dialogue is creating these emotions and has nothing to do with you.
The thing is, if we started showing ourselves true self-love and support, we’d begin treating others so much better. And as you know, a positive attitude is contagious. Optimism is contagious. Acts of kindness are contagious. Once we begin to love ourselves, there is this ripple effect that occurs. We start treating others better, so they start treating themselves and others better, and it just keeps going. Plus, it’s literally good for your health. Being optimistic can lower stress, decrease your risk of depression, improve relationships, and so much more.
Because I believe so strongly in optimism, I feel so grateful to get to team up with Frost Bank on their Opt For Optimism initiative. Frost believes that random acts of kindness are catalysts for optimism, and are on a mission to make the world a more optimistic place. This is more than just a campaign for them. This is an organization-wide initiative meant to inspire success in all areas of people’s lives. Is that amazing? If you want to learn more about their Opt For Optimism initiative, check it out here!
So here’s the deal: They have generously given me a $100 Frost It Forward card to spend on brightening someone else’s day. As well as a few $10 cards to empower others to do the same. (Here’s another secret: in high school, I was named “Most Likely to Brighten Your Day”. I mean, how perfect could this project be for me??). Take a look at what I did to spread kindness throughout my community and hopefully, it will inspire you to do the same!
How I’m Spreading Kindness this Season
Words really have an effect on my mood and I often use affirmations to help lift me up. So when I was asked to spread kindness in my community in some way, I knew I wanted to deliver messages that would truly have an impact. Messages that first and foremost give people the confidence boost they need to be their true selves or to go after what they want. I just know that helping others feel better about themselves can create a ripple effect of kindness & generosity.
So I took my $100 and bought some cards & colorful pens and attempted to write nice messages on them. (Dude, calligraphy is hard.) But I did my best! I put them each in a gift bag along with the $10 Frost Bank cards and a book that has truly changed my life and helped me be a better me (here are a few).
Here are the messages I chose for the cards:
- “It is literally impossible to be perfect.”
- “Failure does NOT exist. Every experience offers something valuable.”
- “Nobody knows what they’re doing. Fake it ’till you make it!”
- “Whatever you are feeling is VALID.”
- “You are ENOUGH, just the way you are.”
Need some ideas?
First, it’s about loving yourself. It’s really that simple: be kind to yourself. That’s it. Give it a try and just you watch what happens. Even if you think you’re nice to yourself now, we all know that’s not entirely true. The natural dialogue we have going on in our heads isn’t the nicest. It’s a reflection of our fears and your ego doing anything it can to avoid feeling pain. Try taking control of that dialogue and just you see what happens.
And I can guarantee you that once you feel good about yourself, you’ll want other people to feel the same way. Because it is such a special feeling and we all deserve to feel it! So give someone a compliment, smile at a stranger when you both see something funny, ask someone if they’re ok, make someone feel good. It’ll make you feel good too!
Spreading kindness doesn’t have to be about purchasing something for anybody — it’s about being human and understanding that we’re all just human. It’s about treating others with the kindness and respect with which you hope to be treated. I hope this time of year gets you thinking more about that as you go about your daily life. And I hope it sticks. What better resolution to set than to be kinder to yourself and those around you?