Random acts of kindness – The Butterfly Effect

The media often do this in January … the bleakest month of the year , when its cold, dark, Christmas is over and Spring is nowhere in sight. People are generally feeling pretty miserable, so to cheer them up, put a smile on their faces and warm their hearts, the national press jump on an uplifting local story and it goes viral.



This week The Independent and Good Morning Britain reported a sweet story of a man on a train who left a note and £5 for a young woman and her son, congratulating her on being a good mother and teaching her son polite manners, saying she was a credit to her generation and to have a drink on him. She was overwhelmed, so surprised and touched by his kindness, she wanted to find him and thank him and today they were reunited with smiles all round.

The man, impressed by her young mothering skills and ability to control her lively toddler on a long train ride said his 18 year old daughter had also been the recipient of the kindness of strangers. On New Year’s Eve, separate people on a train platform gave her money for her lost ticket and another gave her his coat to keep her warm.



Random acts of kindness really do warm your heart. Often we might see people around us and think … “What a good mother, showing her son politeness and keeping him happy” but how many of us actually say it, or take the step further like this man and anonymously leave a fiver and a note.



As we leave the last few days of January behind, with a longed for pay day to look forward to and perhaps a drink after a ‘dry’ month, let’s think about going into February noticing a bit more. It may be, like this story, a young Mum teaching good behaviour to her child, or a teenager who forgot their coat on a night out … it could be a pensioner who’s lost their train ticket or is short of change at a bus stop …Maybe you just clock someone looking a little lost, furiously trying to read an upside-down map … Keeping your eyes open and not being afraid to be kind …


You might not always be met with gratefulness, which is sad in this day and age. People are often suspicious of a stranger’s random act of kindness … but as long as you know the intention is good then that kindness may spread and like the tiny butterfly who flaps it’s wings and the ripple effect can have huge, wonderfully positive consequences the world over. Try it today. Just one, however small, act of kindness and see what happens.

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  1. Hilary murdoch says:

    Dearest Zoe, you were amazing, Daniel is so blessed to have you as his mummy. It was a strangely precious new year despite all the drama! Love you lots! Xxxxx

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