“Each smallest act of kindness reverberates across great distances and spans of time, affecting lives unknown to the one who’s generous spirit was the source of this good echo. Because kindness is passed on and grows each time it’s passed until a simple courtesy becomes an act of selfless courage years later, and far away.
– Dean Koontz
I referred to the butterfly effect in yesterday’s post – a physics concept that postulates small causes can have large effects – like a butterfly flapping it’s wings in Brazil can cause a tornado in Texas. That got me thinking about the concept of paying-it-forward and random acts of kindness.
I did some research on the topic and found a lovely story about Chris Rosati, a man living with ALS who thought the butterfly effect could be applied to kindness. He tested out his theory by giving two young girls at a diner in his hometown of Durham, North Carolina $50 each, and told them to do something kind with it. Some time later he got an email from a village in Africa with pictures of people holding signs that read, “Thanks a lot for spreading kindness Chris Rosati.” His $100 had travelled across the world to pay for a celebratory feast for a village that was finally Ebola-free.
Also, not-so-coincidentally, I came across a video clip of someone close to Prince who is now speaking out about the reason behind Prince’s pop-up concerts – to help those in need, in silent anonymity. Another example of the butterfly effect. And then I spoke with a friend who brought up this video without knowing what I was writing about today. More synchronicity.
Of course, when I experience synchronicities, my antennae perk up, and I pay closer attention, maybe there’s a message here that I’m meant to share. I’ve written several of posts about random acts of kindness before, but this time, I thought maybe I should write a post with a call-to-action. Wouldn’t it be cool if we could create a tornado-of-kindness with a tiny flap of our own wings?
“You have been created in order that you might make a difference. You have within you the power to change the world.”
– Andy Andrews
While I’m in the middle of writing this post, I got a call from my mom, and in casual conversation with no connection to what I’m writing, she tells me that she’s put my affirmation series If You Do, Others Will Too philosophy into practice, she too believes that we can affect change, and make a difference if we Lead The Way. I really don’t make this stuff up, I promise!
The conversation with my mom gave me the idea to create a new card for my series that will be the tornado-of-kindness campaign’s call-to-action affirmation: Make A Difference. If You Do, Others Will Too.
I spent some time today thinking about what I could do to kick start this tornado-of-kindness campaign – I want to do something that will have reaching far effects. Although I didn’t come up with something specific, I kept thinking that I wanted to “tag” my friend Dr. Brookh Lyons, who I just spoke with yesterday about doing a chai chat on KL Guests – my special place on Kurilane for my virtual guests to share their journeys.
I wasn’t sure what we were going to discuss for the chai chat, and now I have the brainchild for what we can brainstorm together. I know she’ll be just as excited about this idea as I am, and just as excited to make a difference. More synchronicity!
I’ll update this post once we’ve had our chai chat, and I kick-off this campaign. If you have a suggestion, a story or an act of kindness you’d like to share, please feel free to do so in the comments below.
Thank you, thank you, thank you!
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15 thoughts on “Butterfly Effect”
Absolutely! You’ve just summed up about half a dozen of my other posts on this topic. If you click on the pay-it-forward or tornado-of-kindess tags on this post, you’ll see all the ones in the series. In fact, I have a couple with videos of exactly that that I think you’ll like!
It’s like a case of “Pay It Forward”.. you do something kind for someone, they pass it on… We never know how far it will go.. but spreading goodness can start with just a smile to a random stranger we pass on the street, or maybe giving some time to talk to someone… it could change someone’s life. (like how a teacher can motivate a student to pursue his/her passion and that student becomes a doctor who saves countless lives).
I’m with you sister! Thank you for your thoughtful and inspired comments!! 😘
P.S. I love the snow on your blog!!!
I love this concept. You put together the most wonderful posts, its the third time I’m reading this one. I did not know of this concept until I saw the movie “The Butterfly Effect”. It’s curious and awe inspiring to think a seemingly small event can cause waves and create ripples through the world possibly having a huge impact. I love this line “create a tornado-of-kindness with a tiny flap of our own wings”. Yes, we can! I believe. I also love your quote; “Make a difference, if you do others will too. Lead the way”. I couldn’t agree more. We all influence each other and just as anger and fear are contagious, so too are kindness and love.