February 21st

spring trees

Last year during the Lenten season I had a bit of a goodwill campaign I coined Calculated Acts of Kindness, or CAOK. The 2007 Lenten season begins today, along with CAOK II. In a nutshell, I think the easiest way to make the world a friendlier, more peaceful place is to make your home, neighborhood, workplace a friendlier, more peaceful place.
You’ve got to walk the walk.

Call me a bleeding heart liberal (wow, so original, I haven’t heard that before.), or a tree hugger (again, hello! I went to NAU. Our mascot may be the Lumberjack, but the only trees we cut down are those holding up Big Box stores.) — but I really think that each of us can make the world better.

And so, enter CAOK. The idea is to plan good acts during the next 40 days and to do so with a “pay it forward” attitude. I’m going to focus my artistic efforts during this time toward celebrating others. I’d love to hear if you are interested in doing the same.

When the world seems mad, like we cannot control who is in power or why the earth is heating up like a tea kettle, the Lenten season gives us the perfect opportunity to slow down and realize that in fact, we can control all of these things and more. By simply starting with the little things — holding open a door for a stranger, helping a neighbor with their trash cans, complimenting the woman who makes your coffee every morning — we can make our world better.

One person at a time, we are conducting a campaign of calculated acts of kindness.
Won’t you join me?


Posted in
CAOK, Journal
Follow the comments.

50 Responses

  1. And to think…you don’t have to be a bleeding heart or a tree hugger to do good. 🙂 I’m joining right now.

  2. Count me in Kelli, you have brightened my day just by putting a smile on my face, I hope I can do the same for others. I’ll start tomorrow, well today since I just released how late it is! 😉

  3. I think this sounds lovely… going to be pondering on how I can contribute…

  4. Miss Kelli you have such great ideas. I am inspired. Count me in!

  5. I’m in! I try to be mindful of doing nice little things daily, but a reminder is always needed!

  6. I am on board. 🙂

  7. Absolutely ~ count me in.

  8. Yes, count me in over here in the frozen steppes.

  9. I always try to do something during Lent as well. I haven’t thought of anything yet, but I’m definitely on board.

  10. Yep…count me in too please!

  11. I absolutely love that you choose the Lenten season for this campaign. Count me in, provided my brain doesn’t suddenly go into performance anxiety mode. [Sometimes I need to sneak up on it….]

  12. I’m in as well. This was such a great idea last year and it was so amazing to see everything you came up with! I’m going to figure out how I can contribute in *some way* this year. Hard to believe it’s already that time of year! 🙂

  13. OK. I can definitely try this out. And while I am at it I am going to try to give up alcohol as well. We will see how long that lasts.

  14. What a wonderful idea! Count me in…and I think this will be a great thing for my little kiddies to see me doing as well…

  15. how inspiring! I am starting today.

  16. It’s a lovely idea, Kelli, and is actually one of the things I try to practice every single day–I’ve done so for years. Whether it’s a smile, kind word, a bit of help, or something I make or bake, I try to gift a small kindness to someone I run into that day. I have a set of three quotes taped to my desk that I try to live by; they have formed the crux of my belief system and shaped my life. One part of the set says: “Three manifestations of humanity: Civility, Generosity, Hospitality.” This fits with your theme, don’t you think?

    You have a truly great heart, Kelli, and I’m so blessed that you are in my life.

  17. Count me in!! 🙂 And what exciting news about your upcoming trip. I can’t wait to see your adventures on your blog.

  18. I’m in. I will plan to involve my daughter, as well.

  19. You bet I’m in. Today I swallowed my fear, spoke up for under-represented people in a tense meeting with lots of key players…and then held my ground in the resulting heated discussion. Voice of the oppressed: that’s me. 🙂

    Thanks, Kelli, for being an example by letting us know how much you care about the world. Can’t wait to read about others’ experiences!

  20. I’m in and I am going to ask the Crayons to join me. I’ll let you know what they say!

  21. It was your phrasing, to “PLAN good acts” that got my attention. Trying generally to be nicer and do good deeds or whatever is so vague. What I like about your campaign is the specificity of it – that you have to stop for a second and think of somebody in particular and precisely what you’re going to do for them. I love it. I’m in.

    I’m also going to try to get up at 6 every morning. Maybe 6:30. Maybe with a Daylight Savings Time grace period.

    Maybe I’ll just try to go to bed by 11.

  22. Count me in…

  23. Oh yes girl – you know I’m in! 🙂 I’m all for good acts and kindness (who isn’t?) and I will try to “calculate” them more consciously! We can change our little parts of the world – I’m sure of it.

  24. Great idea…count me in!

  25. I’m in. You’re an inspiration!

  26. Count me in!!!

  27. I’m in!! And I hope it will last 40 days…..
    (and no, no package yet, I’ve lost any hope, but don’t worry)

  28. i love this idea. how inspirational… good energy one person at a time.
    and the trip to africa sounds amazing!

  29. I’m in:):)

  30. I’m in…I actually started this morning without knowing about the campaign. In a long line of traffic, with every car inching forward (so no one could possibly get in front of them, as if one car getting in front of them will make them late for work), I let someone pull out in front of me. I know it’s a small thing, but I hope it made a difference in that person’s morning. Maybe when they are sitting in traffic this afternoon, they will remember the feeling.

  31. i’m in, Kelli… thanks for the encouragement as always to live a richer life. xx

  32. I would like to jump in too!

  33. i’m in too! love the idea!

  34. I’ll join in too!
    –A fellow tree-hugger in Flagstaff

  35. I may not be a tree hugger! 🙂 Though I love my trees on my property! I think this is a great idea!

  36. Glad the invite is open to conservatives/Libertarians (although I love me some trees!)

    I know this is late in the game, but I am going to make my CAOK’s revolve around a theme. I’ll keep you posted on the progress.

  37. I try to be kind every day, but I will make it much more calculated. Since I’m a little behind, I want to report that I smiled a several people on my afternoon walk. Hey, that works! Thanks again, Kelli, for all your inspiration.

  38. I’m in! And I’m totally happy you got the web site! Whoo Hooo.