Pay it Forward

Pay it Forward

About two months ago I was struggling from a breakup with a man I adored. Our relationship wasn’t perfect but I loved him wholeheartedly. After it ended, I was sad, my self-esteem was at an all-time low, and I felt empty and exhausted emotionally. I gave so much to that relationship that I lost myself along the way. I lost my joy, my self-confidence, and my ability to laugh. I’m used to feeling confident and light and instead I wanted to hide and questioned my worth.

One of the things I always wanted was for my partner to compliment me.

If I had a pretty dress on or if I took the time to get dressed up for a date, I would wait for him to notice and hopefully tell me he appreciated the effort or even just me as a whole. Sadly, words were not his strong suit and in the year we dated, I yearned for a compliment or kind word. After we broke up, I wondered how many other people have the same yearning for those kind words or a genuine compliment that I did. I decided I didn’t want to wait for another man to fulfill that need and sought to fulfill it for others instead. I noticed more when someone would post a pretty selfie on Instagram and began taking the time to let people know I thought they were hilarious, that they glowed, that they were strong, and that they had a sweet smile. I shared how amazing their new haircut looked, or that I loved their outfit, or how radiantly happy they looked. I decided to pay it forward and sought to look for the beauty in others that I wanted someone to recognize in me.

In the time that I started giving love rather than asking for it I have witnessed so much joy.

The reactions﹘warmth and happiness﹘that I’ve received in response to a sincere compliment have given me so much more than I anticipated. Seeing women revel in their strength, beauty, courage, intelligence, and grace has been a gift. I treasure knowing that such an easy gesture can bring so much joy to others. By shifting my focus, I have been able to rely on myself for the things I need but also to be a source of love and light for others who might be struggling like I was. Mark Twain said you could live for two months on a good compliment and I truly believe that.

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Sharing kindness and love is free..

In the time I started to sprinkle it, those seeds have grown. Grown into my own confidence, my own joy, and my ability to bring joy and light to others. I would like to challenge those struggling to pause for a moment and instead of looking for something, look to give something. A kind word, an act of kindness, a small token of affection, be the light for others. If I have learned anything these past two months is that we get more by giving than by receiving. So go out and sprinkle a little love today, light it up!

Thanks for checking out this post by our guest contributor, Rhea!

We are so inspired by her effort to #payitforward that we have created a challenge that will help each of us keep an attitude of gratitude. Using the hashtag #sharingkindnesschallenge, we want to hear your stories about sharing compliments, thoughtful words, smiles, good vibes, and other random acts of kindness with your community!

Rhea is a writer, marathoner, and run streaker. She is currently on an almost 5 year run streak and you can see her out and about Raleigh on her daily run. She is also the proud dog mom to two rescue beagles, Jack and Benson.

How Did You Get Here: Kari Pichora

How Did You Get Here: Kari Pichora

so many girl dates

so many girl dates