100 Good Deeds – Do Something Kind For Others

Urban Life — By on August 8, 2013 4:00 am

Shawna Coronado Do Not Give Up

[Photo Credit: By the amazing Angel Oakley. Thanks my friend!]

Celebrate  “100 Good Deeds Day” with me by doing something kind for a stranger. Tell me what happened – please leave a comment below and share what random act of kindness you did for a stranger (no matter how small or how big) and how it made you feel. My goal is to get 100 comments of good deeds!!! HELP ME MAKE IT HAPPEN!!

This is why I’m celebrating “100 Good Deeds Day”:

Quite frankly, I thought I would be dead by now. My Dad died very young. I was 12 years old when he passed on and somehow I had convinced myself that I would die at the exact age he did. In August of 2012 I turned the same age as he was when he died. Today is my birthday. That means I lived the entire year without biting the big one, croaking, or otherwise kicking the bucket. In fact, it has been one of the best years of my entire life. This is a lesson for me; that I should be celebrating life rather than spending my time waiting for my imminent death. So should you my friends.

You are reading this from your computer desk or couch or phone thinking that you are living just fine. You have food. You have a family. Hopefully you have all your body parts. And because of all of this you think you are alive. I thought I was alive too. Before.

Before is a time when I worked a job I hated, built my life to please others more than myself, and I spent my private time complaining: “Why is the world so cruel to me?”, “I’m sick, someone needs to fix me with a pill.”, “I’m overweight and out of shape because of everything else outside my control.”, “Someday, when I retire, I’ll be able to do what makes me happy.”  I was living life in black and white. I was waiting for my imminent death. Life has not been easy for me — over my lifetime I’ve been abused, physically beaten, I’ve suffered through years of severe allergies and illness and medications, I’ve seen death in my friends and family, I’ve gone hungry before, I’ve suffered through divorce and family trauma, I’ve been fired, I’ve painfully changed careers, I’ve had a never-ending list of things that have slapped my ass on the ground so hard I didn’t think I could get up. My life has been a trial by fire. I blamed the world for the feeling of emptiness I had and thought, in my ignorance, because life had been cruel to me, that simply existing was what living was all about.

Stop Making Excuses and Make Your Ass Happy

Then one day I stopped making excuses and got to work. My trigger for change was a garden; I found solace outdoors in nature. I went from taking over a dozen prescriptions per day down to one, left the job I hated, and started living life in vivid color. Waiting for retirement to be happy? Are you kidding me? We should be living in the moment and work to be happy NOW.

My life lesson is this: no one else is going to make your ass happy. To have a happy ass you must work hard for the things you want to happen. You must physically change the things that are causing you pain and enabling you to wait around for your death instead of celebrating your happiness. Hard work will save your life. I started a campaign to make a difference for the positive in any way I could. My new career involved writing and speaking full time and sharing inspiring possibilities with the world. I made it happen — built new friends and a better relationship with my loved ones, started eating healthier, getting exercise, spending more time in nature, and feeling better every day. I stopped making freaking excuses. Without a doubt, the most important part of this change in my life has been meeting, helping, and influencing the lives of others in a positive way. It sounds naive. It sounds silly. It sounds too simple.  But I say hello to strangers and help them if I can. I try to do something good for at least one person every day. This makes me feel remarkably alive.

Then one day I woke up and realized I was no longer sitting around waiting for my dramatic imminent young death. Instead I was achieving things – connecting with people, seeing the glass as half full, and loving life. I was LIVING. I am finally alive. And yes, at this moment while writing this I am bawling my eyes out with emotion. It is the coolest thing ever to say that my ass is alive and happy.

       “TO LIVE IS THE RAREST THING IN THE WORLD.

        MOST PEOPLE EXIST THAT IS ALL.” — Oscar Wilde

Realizing that you have the power to choose to live in full color makes your purpose in the world more vividly clear. When life gets you down and overwhelms you with difficulties – and believe me, it will – DO NOT GIVE UP. You have the power to own the totality of your life and make decisions that can change your time here on earth for the better. This has an amazing rebound effect because it also makes a difference in the lives of your family and your community. Life is short, so why waste it complaining about your life and not doing something about it? You are only existing now, but you have the opportunity to truly make life a passionate journey. This is your time to make a difference.

Choose to LIVE in the NOW. This choice has not always been easy for me; I have failed often and hard. At times in my life difficult challenges have piled so high they looked like mountains. However, I can’t wait to see what the years ahead might hold. I hope I will have lots of smiles and many friends to share the adventure. And love. Lots and lots of love.

Celebrate 100 Good Deeds Day!

Do this for me: celebrate life rather than waiting for your imminent death. Stop just existing and live in full color. Today is more than my birthday celebrating the year I thought I would die — this is about making a difference.

And so — Celebrate “100 Good Deeds Day” with me by doing something kind for a stranger. Tell me what happened – please leave a comment below and share what nice thing you did for a stranger (no matter how small or how big) and how it made you feel.

My goal is to get 100 comments of good deeds!!! HELP ME MAKE IT HAPPEN!! I am so excited to see what all you do. Thanks for making a difference and leave your comments below!

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77 Comments

  1. Regina says:

    It wast totally random but my neighbor had their water turned off erroneously and I let them shower at my house this morning and ran my hose to their backyard for water until everything is straighted out

  2. Lisa Eldred Steinkopf says:

    I haven’t ever done anything too spectacular. But, I do open doors, help shorter people get things from the top shelf at the store, and just am nice to everyone. You never know what may be going on in their lives. I always told my children that when they were in school, and it stuck with them. Smiling can make a difference as well. It may be the only positive someone gets in their day.

  3. Larissa Prusak says:

    I took my husband to the hospital and I will wait with him. Larissa

  4. Christine says:

    i’m a Watsu practitioner and after my session with a client today, a woman was interested… i offered her a 20 minute “taste” – rather than simply explaining…
    and i surprised my husband with two issues of “Dr Who Magazine” – perhaps not random as i know him but he certainly was not expecting it…

  5. Shawna says:

    We have four good deeds. HOORAYYYY!

    • Sharon Beasley says:

      Couldn’t see how to comment without hitching onto someone else’s as a reply. This isn’t random, but I have been helping, for a few years, an older, wheel chair bound lady with her small garden that she is unable to tend except for some watering. I buy some plants, share my plants and plant seeds in her garden.

  6. Patricia says:

    Nice idea you have here…you going to keep it going? Because if folks keep listing what they do as good deeds it might give other folks ideas. For example, for me, when I mow my lawn, it’s easy for me to take the mower across the street to the older woman’s house to do hers. I used to have her let me know when it needs it. But, of course she wouldn’t tell me. So now I just do it without her asking.

  7. I’ll be starting seeds and then sharing starters with two local community gardens and local senior center.

  8. Jennie B says:

    This is going to crack you up. I opened the door to the laundry room this morning to get the dog food for Liza and there was a spider and a web! I do not like spiders. I took a picture of it, zoomed in and determined it wasn’t anything poisonous. I took a deep breath and caught the spider in a can and released it in the garden. As he was running away I said, “and stay out of the house!” I realize this wasn’t an act of kindness for a person but I feel it’s important to respect all living things.

  9. SaidiSmeenk says:

    Helping with my friends the illegal homeless people in arnhem.

  10. Valerie BE says:

    On the bus to work, it spontaneously occurred to me to let a fellow rider have my spot. He looked very glum, and after I offered a friendly remark, broke into the most wonderful smile. Everyone who saw it perked up. As I walked to my office, people I passed seemed unusually friendly this morning, and I’m sure it was the energy still radiating from the bus encounter.

  11. Today I helped a wonderful friend with her professional bio. Often, as women, we are afraid to toot our own horn. With this woman’s unbelievable work history it was simply a matter of how do we narrow it down! I had been meaning to help her with it for a couple of days and it kept getting pushed into the “tomorrow” pile. Thank you Shawna for the kick in the butt. Kindness and YOU rules!

  12. Deanna says:

    Anytime I can do a good deed for someone I do. The other day, I played coupon fairy for an elderly couple and showed them how to get 4 bottles for the price of one… Made their day and made mine by putting a smile on their face.

    • “Coupon Fairy” – I love it! I have always clipped all the coupons from the Sunday paper, including those for baby products and dog/cat food, when I have neither kids nor pets. I like to reward the person stuck in line behind me and all my coupon deals by handing them some coupons either for items they have in their cart, or for baby or pet products if I know they have one or the other (you can tell a lot about a person from what they put on that grocery store conveyor belt! LOL)

  13. Okay–this may seem odd, but we have a housemate that everyone is tired of. He is too opinionated, lacks boundaries and is a general slob. I usually just avoid him, but this morning I took some time in the kitchen to engage him about his day. When he said a few things that were offensive, I simply ignored it and kept the conversation going. It took 10 minutes and was not as difficult as I thought it would be. Plus, it probably made everyone’s day just a little better.

  14. Mia says:

    I ordered 6 dog beds for a shelter who is in urgent need!

  15. Cassandra says:

    I will make a very special effort to connect with a friend that does not personally know me yet, but I know he could use a good friend ♥ that can be there for him. While the world takes the simplest things for granted, he would cherishes it the most!

  16. David G Barnes says:

    Picked lettuce, zucchini, radishes, squash from the garden and toke them to the soup kitchen for there use for lunch today.

  17. Paul Hampton says:

    Navigated the bureuacracy and found a volunteer “Handyman Brigade” for someone who needed help with her yard and house but couldn’t afford it because she’s on a fixed income.

  18. Sangram says:

    I read your post on facebook but wasnt quite sure of what to do???
    So just poured some milk for a random street dog.

  19. agatha says:

    Husband will be taking elderly friend to doctor and out for the day, i will do the same with another shut in later.Have a wonderful day all.

  20. Jayne Locas says:

    I seldom eat fast food…but stopped for a quick breakfast at McDonalds…there is a contest going on and I won a McFlurry (mixed up ice cream) as I was waiting some others came in to buy drinks and get game pieces…I gave them the game pieces that you collect…but jokingly said but you can’t have my McFlurry…one of the men sidled up to me and said what kind are you getting? I told him Reese’s peanut butter…from his pocket he pulled out an old wadded up Reese’s wrapper and said it was his favorite…so after it was ready I gave it to him…the smile on his face made my whole day…

  21. Steve Bender says:

    I just cleaned the drains in our parking deck so people won’t have to walk through 4 inches of standing water when it rains.

  22. Valerie BE says:

    Today I brought treats for all to a work meeting. We honored the hard work our team has done and took time to appreciate and celebrate one another’s contributions.

  23. Michele Wuehle says:

    Two random acts: Joe’s good deed is explaining the technology of lithium ion batteries (so renewable energy can be stored efficiently) with someone who is contemplating how to go with renewable energy. My random act is to make snacks for some kiddos and their parents who are having a fishing tournament by our boat this afternoon.

  24. A colleague of mine received a dozen roses from her boyfriend and she asked me to arrange them in a vase for her. I did so gladly. :)

  25. Anonymous says:

    I’m fortunate to be able to help others often. Recently donated a whole house full of furniture to a domestic abuse shelter.

  26. AnnOhio says:

    Today I hand decorated am envelope and sent to a friend who has not been well and just lost his father in a car accident. A few hugs and positive thoughts can go a long way. Scatter joy…

  27. Shawna says:

    Thank you all for sharing such inspiration! Simple things are the best!! I’m so happy to see people inspired to do kind things for people.

  28. greenknight2016 says:

    Person living aimlessly like a dead person in the lark

  29. Rosemary says:

    Just stopped at a garage sale and bought a stack of children’s books for a 10 member Congo family that just came here as refugees.

  30. Kelsey says:

    I’m cooking dinner for my friend tonight!

  31. Shirley says:

    I took my ole doggy for a walk in the park, picked up his poo, and picked up garbage!! Great column and ideas! Thanks for giving me alot to think about, and inspiring us all :) )!! Happy Birthday!!

  32. Dan Heims says:

    I was at a friend’s picnic and met this 12 year old girl who was a bit off the mark. Socially that is. Within the next 20 minutes I learned of her life and problems; eczema, bullying, schoolwork. How she turned to home-schooling and bloomed in art . ( her mother’s an artist) she showed me some of her pix on her phone made with unique media ..wow! I showed her pictures from MOMA and Denver Art Museum. She was floored! She had never been.
    I thought to myself, OMG- how cool would it be to make a date with she and her mom to see the Portland Art Museum! We made a date!

  33. Terri Rhodes says:

    Put quarters in all of the gumball machines at the Meijer today to hopefully put a surprised smile on the faces of some unsuspecting children!! I got this idea from my friends at http://www.thebdayproject.com/!!

  34. Connie Stennett says:

    I always try to smile when out amongst people in public, and they almost always smile back. Now that chemo has taken my hair, I find that many adults won’t even look at me, but children do. I smiled at a child in Whole foods today as she was looking at me and she smiled back. I tried even harder to get at least one adult to smile, and I got several! A smile can bring joy to one’s heart, and to me, that is a good deed.

  35. Pam S. says:

    Thanks Shawna! I’ve been wanting to take a donation to Goodwill for weeks and your post inspired me to get off my butt and do it :) Donation delivered! Happy birthday!!

    • Every day I encounter different people with different issues, to day I helped an older woman get back in her house when she locked herself out. I wanted nothing in return, as she tried very hard with cash and food and drink, I turned and asked her for a big fat hug and a smile, then I told her the best payback would be for her to reach out and be NICE to someone else in trouble.
      She thanked me again and told me she would take her sick neighbor some dinner. See why can’t we just be NICE 24/7.

  36. I help a neighbor lady living by herself after her husband left her. Today, I added a 2×4 treated board to support her rotting out wood fence post. Chipped out the old concrete, dug out a deeper hole, put in the 2×4 board next to the existing 4×4 post, bolted the 2×4 board to the post, filled hole with concrete post mix and added water.

  37. Deb says:

    Received a free water melon. Gave half to our neighbors.

  38. vicki says:

    Well, he isn’t a stranger, he is my Dad, but since until 2 years ago when I reached out to him, we had not spoken for 25 years. The last 2 years have been very trying for me. Had to do a whole lot of forgiving. I do feed him at our home every night and tonight we took him to dinner and for a ride. I always help strangers out when I see the need. Shawna, you are awesome and I can’t wait until we finally meet in person. Let me end this by wishing you a Very Happy Birthday sweetie!!!

  39. Kim Vincent says:

    I, like another poster, always try to smile at everyone. On Tuesday, I stood next to an elderly woman listening to a presentation, there were no available chairs, when a chair became available, I asked her if she would like to sit. Today I told a random lady walking in the store that her dress was gorgeous – it was! I try to make contact with random people wherever I go. Happy Birthday and you are so right, I too am guilty of waiting to start my life…no more, I am going to take charge and live my life.

  40. Cyndia says:

    Well, this was a tiny thing but it made me smile and maybe it will you too. Yesterday I went to my neighborhood thrift store; the proceeds from the store to a local animal shelter. I found two jackets in my size, and as I tried one on, I stuck my hands into the pockets, finding some money. I promptly took the cash up to the register and stuck it in the donation box they have set up there. I told the folks working there where I’d found the cash, and they acted very surprised that I hadn’t pocketed it!
    I also buy books there, read them, and donate them back to sell again!

  41. Anne Larson says:

    I held the door for an elderly gentleman at the convenience store.

  42. Deb says:

    and then the neighbor shared some of what I gave her with her Granny who lives across the street from us. She had no idea what I was up to. Pay it forward works and works and works.

  43. Narda Coronado says:

    Today I hugged someone and said thanks.

  44. Shawna says:

    Thanks for all your posts. We didn’t make 100 in the first day – maybe we’ll hit 100 tomorrow!!! My act of kindness yesterday was for a homeless man. He was at a gas station begging. I didn’t give him money, but I did stop and get him a banana and a bottle of orange juice. It’s a small thing, but I plan on doing another small thing today and then again tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow. I hope all of you do too. ::HUGS TO MY PEEPS::

    Thanks very much for participating! :-)

  45. Courtney says:

    Sorry, Shawna, I forgot to post yesterday! I will be donating vegetable seedlings to a grassroots community garden project here in Brazil.

  46. I got a request to make a piece of jewelry for a musician (FB)friend to use as an incentive for donations to a new music project. I said yes and immediately went and made a necklace for her. My husband chimed in with a handcrafted leather flute bag. She was amazed at our response. The nice side effect of this was that when I posted pictures of the necklace, folks went to my jewelry site and I got some sales. Instant Karma! Give away is a great practice. The randomness of this was in her request more than in my response but it certainly was not something I woke up intending to do.

  47. Austin Neal says:

    One of my teammembers has worked really hard for months integrating data from another state system. He hit a milestone this week. To celebrate my cohort and I brought in bagels and juices as a celebratory breakfast. The best part was seeing him glow as we acknowledged him at our team meeting! He was all glows!

  48. We made tomato and okra care packages for our neighbors and left them in their mailboxes right after the mail ran. Thankfully, everybody checked their mail today.

  49. Trisha says:

    Yesterday, I let the guy go in front of me at check out because he had 4 things. Not a huge deal, but we had a joke conversation about it that made it seem so. It was fun.

  50. I carry around extra treats, drinks and clothing that we no longer need in my car. In Denver, the homeless are at intersections collecting food, money, whatever people can give. I don’t give money, ever. But I will drop whatever I can. Sometimes, in the summer, I will carry cases of water in my car just so they can get hydrated. I try to live a conscience life, and being kind is part of something I try to be every day. Kindness goes such a long way. Thanks for this post – it was a great reflection!

  51. Shawn Prinos says:

    I pick up litter and trash while walking my dogs, or just out for a hike in a forest. Its amazing to me the way people litter like the world is their garbage can! I want the pretty prairies, forests, and trails to look nice for the people who appreciate nature…:-)

  52. Lori says:

    One of my personal goals in life is to do a good deed at least once a day. Yesterday’s deed involved helping a young mother with two young children and a little bitty one in the airport near the departure lounge. She had the older ones sitting at a table drawing with pencils on blank paper and they were boooooorrrreeeedddd with that. They were all tired and she was visibly frazzled which I can totally empathize with. So I got a coloring book and a small packet of crayons in the shop down the concourse. They were content for the next 30 minutes until our flight was called for boarding. Her beaming but tired smile was worth the effort.

    I can’t do this sort of thing every day, but I can do some thing every day. Making a difference is a good thing.

  53. Jennie B says:

    I surprised my mom with a visit last evening. And I even took her sweets.

  54. Jennie B says:

    I bought a tank of gas for unemployed friend.

  55. Jennie B says:

    I tipped the person working the Sonic drive thru window. I normally only tip the car hops. Are they still called that?

  56. Chris W says:

    I stopped at a roadside farm stand today. As I was pulling up I saw an elderly woman getting out of her car. She struggled to walk and was half bent over. She went to the counter and was looking at jars of honey, asked the prices and said she would have to come back later as she was going home to get her money. Before she could walk away, I asked her what size she was thinking of and told her that I was buying it for her. She couldn’t believe it, she was so happy. I think I was more happy seeing her joy over a jar of honey and also her comment that she was so happy to see that there are still some good people in the world. The gal working at the stand told me three times how nice that was. Happy Belated BDay, Shawna.

  57. Anne Larson says:

    It may not seem like a big deal, but today I opted for a digital receipt when I went to Staples. Why waste paper and also endanger my health by handling a receipt coated with BPA? I will do it again, now that I know it is an option!

  58. Jennie B says:

    So today I went to Aldi (hope people are familiar with the shopping cart deal there). I offered a man my quarter for his basket and he smiled and wouldn’t accept my quarter. When I was leaving I saw a woman digging in her purse for a quarter. I offered her my basket and she was so appreciative. I had to tell her someone gave me the basket earlier. Her response, I’ll pay it forward. I got goosebumps from head to toe!

  59. Jennie B says:

    Later in the day a friend of mine prepared cantaloupe and watermelon in nice bite size pieces for me. I took some to my widowed neighbor and we had a nice chat.

  60. Jennie B says:

    And I’d like to add a big one – something a friend has done for me. I started feeling poorly TH night and when this happens I get very anxious. My friend has stayed with me every night since. That’s a big act of kindness wouldn’t you say?!

  61. Lana K. says:

    I hold doors open for people not able to open doors, I gave money to a homeless person for something to eat, it is the little things I do that makes me feel good.

  62. Keith D says:

    Yesterday we were returning from a family vacation to the Gulf Coast. We stopped at a gas station in Kentucky where a church-sponsored car wash was being held. There weren’t any cars lined up, and the kids were looking a bit dejected, so I called one of them over & told him “We’re on a trip and can’t do the car wash, but I CAN donate this…” and handed him a $20 bill. He ran to the adults waving the bill around and we got a round of cheers and applause as we drove away. Lotsa smiles all around. =)

  63. Amanda Baker says:

    I recently sorted a big stack of picture frames that had old art in them. There were a couple that I did not want to I leaned them up against a tree out front of the house with ‘FREE’ signs on them. They were gone within the hour so someone stopped and got some free art and picture frames.

  64. Chris W says:

    Here’s another….made dinner for an older neighbor man who’s wife is currently in the hospital.

  65. Shawna says:

    Thank you for all your comments and support – KEEP’EM COMING!!! Good deeds – HOORAY!

    Shawna

  66. Mia Voss says:

    Happy belated birthday, sweet girl! This is so amazing, just like you! Ok, here’s my rando act: 1. rescued a kitty from the street, parked him in my guest room overnight & treated him to a whole can of cat food, a mani/pedi and some snuggles. Was planning on posting signs the next day when I saw a sign for him in a local store – returned the sweet boy to his papa who was soo grateful. In turn, the owners’ act of kindness was to treat Greg and I to a delicious dinner at his restaurant. #Payback ! xoxo

  67. Carol Roster says:

    We get MacDonald’s once every other week. Whenever I go there, I ALWAYS donate my change (coins) to the Ronald MacDonald House. Every time. :)

  68. Valerie BE says:

    Walking to work today, I saw a lady stumble and fall on the sidewalk. Both another passerby and I went to her immediately. We helped her get up gracefully and collect her spilled purse contents. I’ve fallen myself in that spot, and having others show compassion and support turns a dreadful event into one that leaves you feeling warm and valued.

  69. Kitty says:

    An elderly woman was in front of me at the checkout line. She was trying to unload her items while holding her cane. I was afraid she would. I asked if I could help her and proceeded to unload her basket for her. It made me feel good. She was happy too.

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  71. Anonymous says:

    I spent three weeks organizing all the books on all the shelves of the elementary school library in the poor part of town where I am a volunteer reading tutor, and will hopefully be starting a student service club to help keep it organized on an ongoing basis. I was inspired to do this after one of my tutoring students wanted to find a book about baseball (he’s a recent immigrant and is embarrassed when his pals talk about the local team because he doesn’t understand the game) but became discouraged and frustrated when he realized the nonfiction books were so badly disheveled that there were no baseball books at all on the shelf where they should have been.

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