Wow, what a great idea!
My second was:
Too bad there’s no way I can fit it in.
But then I realized that’s the whole point.
Most of us are living insanely busy, over scheduled lives, and yet, most of us still have the desire to make a difference in some small way. And that’s what this initiative, this new web community, is all about. Finding ways to do-good, to pay it forward, to lift another, to live more consciously, to help the earth, help animals, help others, whatever you chose—without having to drastically rearrange your life or drop your prior commitments.
So, after I e-mailed my acceptance, I started thinking about what my own personal five might be. Just what I could possibly contribute, primarily from home, (since I’m on an extremely tight deadline schedule that allows little time away from my desk), that might make a positive impact?
And after taking a look around, really taking stock, I came up with these:
1. I, Alyson Noël, do hereby commit to frequent, yet random, acts of kindness. Okay, so maybe this one is a little undefined, a little broad in scope, but that’s just how I like it. Leaving it open like this means it can be anything from picking up something someone dropped, to paying for a stranger’s drink order at Starbucks. All I can say for sure is that I’ll be sure to keep track so I can post them all here!
2. I will also commit to random acts of charity. Yeah, I know, vague much? But while random acts of charity can be similar to the acts of kindness listed above, they can also be in the forms of donations, time, money, stuff--we'll see what transpires!
3. Every time I buy something new, like clothes, books, shoes, and/or purses—my usual vices—I will donate something similar to a person, place, or organization that needs it. This one, I can’t wait to get started on!
4. I will also commit to whatever acts I can to live greener and help lessen and/or offset my environmental footprint. Not sure what your footprint is? Take the quiz HERE. It's amazing what a difference a few small steps can make!
5. And while this may be the last item on the list, it’s actually one that’s hugely important to me, so here goes: I Alyson Noël do hereby promise to firmly commit to positivity, to keeping all of my communications to a no snarking/no ranting zone, and will happily post about what’s going right in the world, since I think we’re all too well aware of what’s going wrong. By doing this, I’m really, really hoping that I can convince at least one, maybe two, even three, others to follow suit. Because the truth is, I’m often saddened by the Internet. Saddened by how a tool that holds so much potential to bring us all together, more often degrades into an acid tongued snark fest instead. I’m saddened by the amount of energy so many people put into such rampant negativity. I’m saddened that we’re living in a world where the well-timed insult reigns supreme. Yes, there are shows I don’t like, celebrities I don’t care for, books that left me feeling bleh—but so what? Who cares? Those are just my opinions—it doesn’t make them facts. Why invest all of that time and energy into something you claim to hate? Why tear someone down, when you can lift someone up instead? Seriously? Why even go there? Anytime I’m even tempted to do this, I think of this line by Deepak Chopra: “The cheapest way to feel good about yourself is by feeling superior to others.” And I’m always stopped dead in my tracks. Calling someone ugly won’t make you pretty—declaring someone stupid won’t make you smarter—tagging someone as a no-talent won’t make you gifted—but stopping to take the time to say something nice, never, ever fails to put you and your subject in a flattering light. We can do this—all of us--one positive step at a time!
So there you go, that's my Five. What about you--are you ready to Live Your Five?
And stay tuned for Becca's Five tomorrow. . .
Happy world changing!