You’ve probably clicked on this post because you were maybe intrigued by the word RAKtivism, or maybe you know what it means and you want to find out how to make 2018 your most RAKtivist yet! Or you just love my blog and read all my posts regardless of the title (If you are one of those people, thank you!).
RAKtivism is a word I’ve only just discovered. In fact it was down to a book I got for Christmas (The Little Book of Lykke to be exact) that first introduced me to the term. Me being me, I thought I’d do some research and discovered a truly beautiful and wonderful movement that I thought I absolutely had to share with you today.
I’m sure you’ve all heard of random acts of kindness, if you haven’t now you have. Random acts of kindness are exactly what they sound like: small acts of kindness done at random.
A RAKtivist is a Random Acts of Kindness Activist and I think that is the coolest thing going. Not only is it a new word, but it also is what we need right now!
I think it’s fair to say a lot of bad things are happening in the world. Trust me, as a 20 year old politics student I have a pretty bleak view of the world in the real sense. Wars are raging, inequality is rising, racism and sexism are still a thing and at the rate things are going I’m probably never going to be able to afford my own house. And this is still only the tip of the iceberg. This post isn’t going to be about the dire state of the world, but I do need to touch on it to set the scene you see.
On the main stage of global politics there seems to be a sheer lack of compassion. We are become more distanced from humanity with the rise of A.I. and the increased use of drones in wars. We are stepping back from being human and what that means. Technology is invading our everyday life and slowly we are becoming disconnected from our community, our neighbours and our planet.
This is why we need RAKtivists.
We need people to bring that connection back to the human level. To put out that helping hand to let that person know that things will be okay. When you walk down the street you see so many people that need a smile put on their face, their day a change or even a simple “are you okay?”.
Random acts of kindness are small and easy to do. You don’t have to spend money, or even make a huge amount of effort. You just simply need to have the thought.
The best part of all of this RAKtivism is that you can start literally right now. After you’ve read this post you can put down your phone/laptop/whatever you’re reading this one and go give someone a meaningful compliment. Done. You could go and smile at someone in the street. Done. Make a family/friend a cup of tea/coffee. Done. Lend your favourite book out to a friend, or go one better and donate it to a local library to spread the enjoyment from it even further. Done.
See how easy it is?
Being a RAKtivist is literally doing something that will put a smile on someone’s face. It’s thinking about your impact on someone else’s life. It’s so easy to be wrapped up in our own little bubbles and forget the bigger picture. Yes, some things might frustrate us, but ultimately life is pretty good. Think about what you’re grateful for and how you can use that to turn someone else’s day around. There is actually science that links being kind to benefiting your body and mind (click here if you don’t believe me!).
Don’t forget the planet either…
Your random acts of kindness don’t just have to be to the people you can see in your life today. Think about what acts you can do to help those you will never meet; the future generations.
Climate change, plastic pollution and the depletion of fossil fuels are all impacting our planet and its lifespan. What acts can you do to try and change this for your children? Your children’s children? Your children’s children’s children?
Say no to plastic where you can, re-use and recycle the plastic you can’t avoid. Walk or use public transport and plant trees or indoor plants. All are so simple and yet can have an impact.
Ultimately being a RAKtivist is the easiest thing you can do this year. Think about adding it to your New Year’s resolutions to try and do one act of kindness everyday. I’m going to.
I’d love to hear your random acts and how they made you feel, so please share them with me in the comments or social media.