Kindness is contagious


As I open the door,  I almost have to navigate around the people waiting to be seated at IHOP.  Everyone had the same idea this morning.  Who wants to cook breakfast and dirty our kitchens?  All the benches and seats are filled.

“Yes, there are four of us today.” 

“The wait is about 10 minutes.” 

That isn’t really all that bad.  Okay, we can wait for just 10 minutes.  I turn around to gather my family.  There is no place to sit so we stand outside for a minute until some room opens up.  We slowly make our way, moving seats to sit inside the main area so we can hear when we are called.

An older couple walks in to be put on the list.  I quickly get up and ask the woman to please have a seat.  She thanks me but says she’ll go sit on some chairs that were further inside the restaurant.  I smiled and she walked away.

Moments later a man across the room asked a woman that had been standing for a little while if she’d like a seat.  She also declined, but it was nice to see him offer.

He had a look of guilt in his eye.  Would he have ever offered his seat if he hadn’t seen me offer mine to someone else?  I guess I’ll never know, but I believe that acts of kindness are contagious.  If you are helpful and nice, others will try to be as well.  They don’t want to look like a mean person or selfish when others are being generous.

What was the last random act of kindness that you did for someone else?  


  1. sharylove says

    I always offer my seat to older people when waiting to be seated. Now that I’m pregnant more decline more than I’m used to, but I still like to offer because I know someone else will once they realize it’s okay to be kind to strangers. :)

  2. Betty Baez says

    Last saturday I had two extra tickets to madamme Tussaud’s wax museum so after leaving the museum I stood outside and waited to find the perfect person to surprise the extra tickets to I chose a mom and her son and they where excited and so thankful it made my day :) I always try to smile when passing another person it truly makes a difference

  3. says

    I think kindness is contagious. I think being polite is catching too. An epidemic of niceness would be great, the world would be so much…well, nicer!

  4. says

    My hubby won’t sit when we have to wait for our seat. He would rather let someone else who needs it sit, and I will stand with him when there is a crowd and let our kids sit.

  5. says

    I don’t remember. Which I’m pretty sure means I haven’t done one lately. Thanks for reminding me!

    It is a great idea and you are probably right…it is contagious. Part of the problem is that we get so involved in our own doings that we just don’t pay attention to whats going on around us…and forget that all those other folks have feelings. Then someone comes along as does something to remind us…

  6. says

    The last random act of kindness I did was paying for the people behind me at the drive thru’s order. Truthfully, I wouldn’t had done it if the people in front of me hadn’t paid for mine.

  7. says

    So true! Kindness IS contagious. At a friend’s child’s birthday, their spotless home was an absolute mess by the time the party wound up. Knowing the Mom has enough on her plate with 2 little ones, 2 of us began picking up paper plates and cleaning up. 3 other Moms , I guess needed that cue, and jumped up to help. Within 15 mins her home was back to its spotless self!

  8. says

    Definitely contagious! Just smiling at someone can make a big difference. Don’t ride the subways in NY though! I have never seen one person give up there seat (except for myself).

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