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What I Learned from One Trip Around the Ferris Wheel

A Personal Perspective: Memorable mini playful acts of kindness.

This weekend, I ran around a carnival. Even at 33, picnic rides have been a lifelong love. The spinning, lights, rises and falls are an exhilarating thrill I look forward to all year.

And it all began after a single round of the Ferris wheel.

I still remember little me looking up at the giant ride with fear and curiosity. I watched it a few go-rounds before asking the tech if I could try just one turn.

He could have said no, that's not usually how it works. But he didn't. That one time showed me how fun and safe it could be.

Simple acts of kindness, having an open mind, and curiosity have the potential to make wide-reaching waves. It's a tradition I try to carry on myself.

I wonder if that tech remembers. It's amazing what can come from just a little patience and play.

If you're looking for some small, playful ways to practice kindness, here are some ideas.

1. Ask Someone a Story from Their Life

Sometimes, questions can bring up interesting conversations. "Where did you two meet?" Or "What does that bumper sticker mean?"

2. Write a Thank You Note (Or Make a Thank-You Card)

A thank you note, especially one that's unexpected is bound to cast a smile over at least two faces; the writer's and the receiver's. Creating a thank-you card can add to the fun

3. Let Someone Teach You Something

People hold all kinds of knowledge and are often generous with it. Being willing to learn from each other spreads positivity.

4. Plant a Garden

You get to watch the garden grow and so does everyone else.

5. Feed the Birds (and Stop to Watch Them)

Birds are beautiful creatures. Setting out bird seed and taking time to watch the birds might sound small, but it gives a moment of happiness.

6. Wear a Whimsical Hat

Sure to make someone smile

7. Teach Someone How to Do Something

Taking time to teach someone something helps both.

8. Tell a Joke

When we're kids we tell jokes and while many adults continue the practice we tend to be a bit more reserved with time. Yet, laughter sparks joy and positive interactions.

9. Laugh at Other People's Jokes

Small as it is, if we can laugh at other's jokes and our own follies we are in a space to enjoy the little things just a little more.

10. Be Open to New Things

Opportunities for small acts of kindness are all around us. Being open to those gives space for new perspectives.

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