Kindness: it was hands-down the running theme of last week’s Creative Show & Tell. From Renata’s video of Jason Silva talking about how we can affect positive change one person at a time, to Amy’s anonymous act of kindness card that she picked up in a café. When Tara showed us the Happy Forecast website, showing the happiness levels of the different suburbs in London, we realised a definite theme to the morning…
With a full team of five again, we discussed a whole lot of things like social experience, compassion and kindness. Tara then had the idea that this week, instead of writing a short paragraph about our inspiration, we should design an infographic. It wasn’t an easy task – especially for the writer among us – but we all tackled it and lived to tell the tale.
Here’s our Creative Show & Tell inspiration round-up for the week, complete with infographic and photo/account of each random act of kindness. We’d like to encourage you to pay-it-forward, and make someone’s day. Big or small, every little bit counts.
INSPO #1 // Happy Forecast
Check out the Happy Forecast website!
My Show & Tell piece was this great interactive website by Clubhouse Studios. The Happy Forecast visualises over a year of observational social wellbeing research carried out across all 119 postcodes of London.
London is notoriously known for being a grumpy city and people tend to blame it on the weather. This graphical website shows us that the weather is only a small part of what makes a happy city and it is the interactions of its people that counts for so much more.
So what makes a city happy? Show don't tell.
Tara's Infographic of The Happy Forecast...
Tara's Random Act of Kindness
Having this task to do this random act of kindness was at the back of my mind and then it kinda just happened without me really knowing it! I was in Manly for a meeting and I hung back for a while to do some work. A lady sat down next to me to join another lady in what looked like an important client presentation. She opened her laptop and was lost for words as she realised her battery was about to die. Having a laptop charger in my bag, I leaned over and said "Would you like to use my charger?" She looked totally relieved as she could now continue her presentation. Afterwards, she came over to thank me and we got talking about what we did for a living. Turns out she is a film producer who has just started her own wedding business, a new entrepreneur who I then invited to our event Cereal Entrepreneurs. A couple of weeks later she followed through with her invitation and came to our event and I am meeting her for coffee next week. This showed me that random acts of kindness are not just about fleeting moments but can turn into lasting friendships too.
Tara, Founder & Creative Director
INSPO #2 // Jason Silva: The New Definition of Billionaire
Have you heard of Jason Silva? He has been dubbed the new-age philosopher with his energetic lateral-thinking rants about life, love and how we navigate in this technological era. This video is one of the first that grabbed my attention as he re-defines what it means, or what it should mean, to be a billionaire in our world right now. It challenges the idea that we are single beings walking our own isolated paths. If empathy only extends as far as our sight allows, it now has infinite global reach. So what do we do with this ability? He challenges us to extend our hands and come to the aid of others. The new billionaire is he/she who positively affects the lives of 1 billion people. That's what we need in the world right now. Don't you agree?
Renata's Infographic on The New Definition of Billionaire...
Renata's Random Act of Kindness
There's nothing more enjoyable than shocking older people with kindness - I'll get to that in a second. Granted, I don't feel like I truly went out of my way to be kind; I try to be courteous and a decent person day-to-day, treating others as I'd like to be treated. Being tasked with this mini character-building project, I looked for opportunity to present itself and there was no better place to be that little bit kinder than on a packed plan arriving in Sydney late at night.
Everyone was uncharacteristically nice, most likely happy to be home. I spotted an older lady struggling with her bag as we were exiting the plane out onto the tarmac down the steep staircase, so I jumped in and helped her carry it down. While it was a tiny act of kindness and not really something out of character, she really appreciated it, thanking me over and over again. If it reminded her how kind and generous people can be, then I have done my little part.
Renata, Designer & Photographer
INSPO #3 // Anonymous Act of Kindness Card by Wake Up Project
I picked up this card in the foyer of Rethink Financial Group, which incidentally is the coolest, most forward-thinking accounting firm I've ever come across. It was sitting on a pile of magazines and drew my attention straight away. The premise is that you pop out the Kindness Card, and leave it behind after you partake in an anonymous act of kindness, encouraging the receiver to do the same, and so on and so forth. The message is simple, it's heartwarming, and it's something tangible that you can leave as a little present to remind people of the good in the world.
Amy's Infographic on anonymous acts of kindness...
Amy's Random Act of Kindness
I spent all weekend wondering what to do for my random act of kindness and had plenty of ideas. I was going to give my beloved potted plant to a passerby on the street, to brighten their day, give some old blankets to Wayside Chapel and pass on a load of furniture to friends who'd just moved house. I did all those things, but it didn't feel quite right. It all felt a bit surface, like I was doing them because I knew I had to.
It was a hellish weekend - moving house, a series of unfortunate events including cleaners not turning up, chunks of the wall being torn out, furniture wouldn't fit in the truck, a ticket from police, moving van double booked, and a car accident to top things off. It was actually my little brother's car accident, in my car that he's been borrowing for months because he crashed his own not long ago. When I heard what had happened, at the end of one of the worst weekends ever, I really wanted to explode in a lecture about growing up and responsibility, but instead I took a deep breath and tried to put myself in his position. How would I feel? I'd be feeling like I'd had some pretty bad luck. I'd be feeling guilty and shitty and like the world was against me. So, instead of being angry, I called him and told him I loved him, that I was glad he was okay, and I wasn't mad, everything would turn out fine.
Sometimes the greatest acts of kindness aren't random at all, but right in front of you.
Amy, Copywriter & Content Editor
INSPO #4 // John Lewis #MontyThePenguin Christmas 2014
Back home in the UK, it's the most exciting time of year when the new John Lewis commercial comes on TV - it means Christmas is coming! This video shows an amazing, beautiful story in just 2 minutes with so much emotion. We're a sucker for a cute animal video here at Dream & Do, and John Lewis hit the nail on the head with this one, appealing to their potential customers by tugging on the heartstrings. The best thing is that this heartwarming video also became an interactive experience on the John Lewis website - complete with book, 360-degree panoramic #MontyThePenguin world, and app. Not to mention encouraging viewers to share their loving Xmas story. All we need is love :)
Sarah's Infographic on the John Lewis commercial...
Sarah's Random Act of Kindness
Looking back now, I possibly started off thinking too much about being kind. I set off Monday morning and went for a walk around my area with a preconceived idea in my head. After a little while, I felt a bit like a predator waiting to pounce on some unsuspecting person in desperate need of help. My first attempt was a fail where I offered a tradie some help with his tools but he was determined he'd make it on his own. Next up, I spotted a couple of tourists, map in hand, blank expressions on their faces and saw my chance. As it turned out, though they were only about 100m away from their destination and I probably added time on to their journey rather than helping. Feeling fairly disgruntled and ready to call it quits, I turned towards home and when I stopped looking for it I saw someone who was in need of help. A lady walking towards me with hands full of groceries and a big bunch of flowers under one arm. I stopped her to ask if she would like some help back to her house and after a moment of explaining there was no more to it than I wanted to help, she accepted my offer. So together we headed back to her building and we had a chat about nothing in particular. She told me she was from Bateman's Bay and was here visiting her daughter. Then I told her about my travels and new life in Sydney. My new friend Ros then went on to tell me about her new puppy she got recently for company as her husband passed away earlier this year and she was thinking of moving to Sydney permanently to be closer to her daughter. Coming from a small place like Bateman's Bay, though, she wasn't sure if Sydney was somewhere she could see herself living. During our chat, she mentioned that having something like this happen with a total stranger in Sydney restored her faith a little. By this point, we had not only reached the building but gone in to the lobby to sit down for a proper chat. Although, I think she actually appreciated the help with the shopping, I think by some weird twist of fate I found a person who was really in need of this gesture and we both took something away from this simple act of kindness.
Sava, Creative Intern
INSPO #5 // Homeless father experiment NYC
This video/social experiment is both heart-warming and heart-breaking. It left me questioning so many aspects of life. As a human race, is it natural for us to feel more compassion towards situations that we can relate to? Do we only understand and have sympathy for something that we have been through ourselves? Or do people just choose to turn a blind eye to issues that they find too upsetting?
It is a biological fact that people who help others in some way, lead a happier and more fulfilled life. Psychologist Datcher Keltner has devoted his career to studying the nature of human goodness and conducted ground-breaking research on compassion, laughter and love. His research has found that “compassion action” triggers the brain's pleasure centre, releasing the same endorphins we get from eating… just without the calories.
Jo's Infographic on the homeless social experiment...
Jo's Random Act of Kindness
Ted is one of the few people I am almost guaranteed to see every day... He is Australian, 45 years old and despite being homeless, always wears a smile. As my act of kindness I decided to take Ted a flask of coffee, which I will collect off him every evening and refill for him the next morning. I'm hoping over time we will form a better friendship and he will open up more to me about his situation and how he has ended up homeless. I didn't feel right taking a photograph of him, but here's the jazzy disco flask!
Jo, Creative Coordinator
The Dream Team xx