Wednesday, March 25, 2009

The Kindness Experiment

Regular readers may remember this post where I announced my intention to try to give compliments more freely and frequently. This is a progress report.

Right away as I started this experiment, I realized that it was impossible. When standing outside my classroom between classes, literally hundreds of kids walk by in large groups, so singling each and every one of them out to pay a compliment was just not feasible. I instead decided that I would either compliment or at least greet every single kid who came into my room. Sometimes, compliments just wouldn't come, which is why I went to a greeting. I figured it would at least make everyone who walks in feel welcomed, acknowledged, and appreciated.

For the most part, I'm not sure if kids have noticed any change. I frequently stand outside my room between class periods and greet students anyway. Where I did see some sort of change, though, was when I did pay a compliment -- whether it was a nice shirt, cool shoes, or just a happy smile on a face. Inevitably, I was greeted with a big smile, and that smile frequently lasted well into the class period.

I've found, too, that my complimentary ways has extended beyond those four-minute passing periods. I've become much more open about paying compliments to co-workers, friends, and extracurricular kids. I keep hoping that the complimentary joy will spread and people will start paying more compliments themselves, but so far, I haven't seen it happen . . . yet!

In the meantime, the experiment continues. I will report further findings as they make themselves found.

1 comment:

NICKI said...

It sounds to me like the joy is spreading! Don't give up!