Friday, July 20, 2012

Kindness and Paying It Forward

Sometimes one word can say it all. I remember challenging myself to think of just one word that I felt was the best trait in what I admired most in a person. I was surprised that it did not take that long to come up with the word, KIND. This simple four letter word covers so many situations. Kindness is always better in every situation! Being kind softens the blow in even difficult situations like saying, NO, firing a person from a job or turning down a request. And kindness makes good situations better. Kindness is doing good to others from the heart in thought, word, and deed. Kindness means you are concerned about other people. Kind people think about another person’s feelings and not just their own, They help someone who is in need and they are kind even when others are not. Kind people never expect anything in return. They just treat other people kindly because they want to help make someone’s life better. Kindness makes the world a nicer place because it makes people happier. Kindness is the virtue at the core of Pay It Forward Foundation and Pay It Forward Experience.

I had seen the movie Pay It Forward. The concept sounds simple but why are not more people showing kindness? I was able to talk to a person who has taken up the banner 100% to spread the word of kindness. I had the pleasure to talk with Charley Johnson, the public face and name for Pay It Forward (PIF), on the phone. As I talked with Charley, I could hear his passion, enthusiasm and sincerity about his mission.

Charley Johnson,
Charley first became a board member of Pay It Forward Foundation before his current positions as President of both Pay It Forward Foundation and Pay it Forward Experience. Because of his belief and conviction about Paying it Forward, he left his own company and career to change the world and how people view humanity. He is also the creator of the Pay It Forward bracelet, a physical reminder and a human connection, to do good. The way the bracelet works: once a person who is wearing the bracelet does a kind deed, that person gives his/her bracelet to the person who received the kindness. Now it is the responsibility of the new owner of the bracelet to do something kind. And the giving of that bracelet continues with each new person and each new act of kindness. These bracelets have been sent to over 1.3 million people in 117 countries (out of 196).

PIF Bracelets - physical reminder to be kind
As the new president, Charley launched the
“PIF Experience”,the website ( responsible for collecting stories from all over the world of people Paying It Forward. It is updated several times daily with news of where Pay it Forward is headed and has also become the headquarters for all Pay it Forward bracelet requests from around the world. Charley also founded the “Pay it Forward Hall of Fame” in November of 2011. The First inductee was Catherine Ryan Hyde, author of the Pay it Forward novel that was turned into a major motion picture in 2000. Catherine, the founder of the Pay It Forward Foundation, is behind Charley 100% with his efforts to make sure all 7 billion people in the world know about Pay It Forward. With so many requests for the bracelet, sponsors are needed so that all these requests can be filled.

The world, in Charley’s words, is still a mess. Yes, there is a lot of goodness and kindness in the world, but not enough. If there were enough, then the world would be a much better place, free of wars, crime, cruelty, poverty and suffering. We’re all responsible for the state of  the world. The answer is simple: kindness. As Charley said, no one can argue that we shouldn’t at least give it a try! Little things become BIG things. Every act of kindness counts no matter how large or small.

PIF is based on reminding people what they already know and encouraging them to DO something – a random act of kindness – each and every day. The more people who do something new each day to make other lives a little bit better, the better the world becomes. It’s as simple as that.
As the guiding and driving force behind this “kindness movement”, Charley travels extensively to spread the word. He had just returned from trips to New York, Pittsburgh, and Ireland and was resting back home in Salt Lake City, Utah, when I spoke to him. His next stop is Brazil …..but really it is the  Whole World.
I don't have the bracelet to give it to you, instead I ask you, the readers, to use this article to pass on to some of your family and friends. By doing so, we are helping Charley spread the word of kindness.....and Paying It Forward
                                 Simplicity in a complex world”. - Charley Johnson



  1. Hi Daisy,
    We try and "pay it forward" whenever the opportunity presents itself.... but there are a lot of "people" out there on the corners taking advantage of the giving nature of people. Recently, at the local grocery store, had the chance to help out a mother on assistance who had more in her grocery cart than her welfare check would pay for and was able to give the clerk a few dollars and said don't ask questions, just put this toward her bill. At McDonald's were three young adult teens trying to pool their change to share some food and I tried to assist them with a couple of dollars, but was refused. But, there were several old people there who witnessed what I tried to do, and said, "It was really nice to see someone try and help the young ones and we really appreciate what you tried to do..." The rewards are looking the person in the eye and seeing their appreciation and feeling that someone, maybe someone really does care.... Daisy, you have a good blog and "Daisyology" will be a life long study of a very special person... glad to be your friends...
    Wild Duck and the Piper
    Bremerton Washington

  2. Hi Becky and Drake,

    Wow, so happy that you already read my blog....and so happy that you Pay It Forward whenever you can...even with the chance of refusal. I am just learning this blogging skill...and I am trying to write about things and ways that celebrate life and share some new or updated information....want to inspire people to be the best part of themselves. Keep in touch.....Love you guys and glad to be your friend, too.