Goodness has the power to ripple out and transform everything along its way. By actively focusing on good, each individual can take part in creating positive change, on a personal level for themselves, for their community, society at large, and the planet. Our collective wish for a harmonious world begins and ends with doing good.
Out of the idea that each and every person can do a good deed for the benefit of others, be it large or small, I initiated Good Deeds Day. Annually, this celebration of giving draws hundreds of thousands across the globe to participate in a festive day filled with good deeds of all sorts. From small acts of kindness such as a smile that brightens someone else's day, to volunteering in hospitals or cleaning beaches, people from all walk of life, any age or background, all join in on Good Deeds Day, uniting around one cause that we all share – doing good.
Good Deeds Day gained worldwide popularity in just seven years. Starting in Israel in 2007 with 7,000 participants, it soon crossed borders and cultures, and this year, on Good Deeds Day 2013 held March 10, hundreds of thousands in 50 countries around the globe will come out to give of themselves for the benefit of others. USA, Canada, Britain, Italy, Chile, Russia, Moldavia, South Africa, are just some of the countries in which good deed doers have already pledged to take part. This demonstrates that given the opportunity, people want to do good.
Good Deeds Day is embraced by so many worldwide, because it is based on such as simple idea to which everyone can connect and choose to take part. Individuals, communities, organizations and businesses create partnerships together and collaborate on Good Deed Day projects. In 2012, MTV International leveraged its media networks and spread the message of Good Deeds Day to its millions of viewers across in Europe, Asia and the Middle East. This year, ABC Network is holding a grand kickoff event in Times Square on March 9, together with organizations such as Jump Start, Habitat for Humanity NY City, and more. In Washington DC, more than 3,000 people will participate in Good Deeds Day projects held March 10, involving local communities, businesses and organizations such as Common Good Farming. Produce will be picked and fields will be prepared for spring farming season, food baskets will be distributed to the needy, gardens will be planted, schools spruced up, visits made to hospitals and senior citizens homes, and much, much more.
Good Deeds Day in Israel, held March 5, 2013, reached an all high with 370,000 good deeds doers from 191 local authorities including 81 Arab cities, tens of academic institutions, 800 schools all over the country, 250 youth groups, and employees from 355 businesses, all involved in more than 5,200 projects organized especially for Good Deeds Day. A special Good Deeds Day Also at Night event took place this year in bars and cafes, where writers and artists raised discussions about activating people's goodness.
Good starts with each and every one of us as an individual, and in the responsibility we choose to take for our potential impact on others and the planet. It's a personal journey filled with opportunities on which we can act, according to our hearts' desire, each in their own unique way. I say this based on the simple premise that all that people have to do in order to bring happiness and improve lives, is to think good, speak good and do good. It is in our hearts and in our minds, and in our choice to harness the power of positive energy inside us, to make a real difference.
My biggest aspiration is to inspire people to do good. My new book Activate Your Goodness, brings personal stories and those of others from around the world to give readers practical tools for thinking good, speaking good and going good. Business and philanthropy are the platform I have been privileged to act through, and in my personal initiatives, such as Good Deeds Day, my digital platform Goodnet.org, and also in my new book Activate Your Goodness, I wish to demonstrate that positive impact is possible for you personally and in all spheres of life.
It all comes down to mutual responsibility, and we all have a part to play in our collective future. As more and more people adopt the values that Good Deeds Day stands for, and take action throughout the year, our goodness will ripple out in ever expanding circles, creating the critical mass required for essential change to take place in our world. Just imagine the impact!
This article was originally written for and posted on TakePart