In a world often overshadowed by materialism and the pursuit of 'having,' Tess Bell, a mother-of-two from Australia, is leading a transformative mission to make 'being kind' the new norm. With the advent of her 'Sharing Kindness Advent Calendar,' Tess is inviting families to join a global movement that emphasizes the power of simple acts of kindness, shifting the focus from chocolate and candy to genuine connections and thoughtful deeds.
Tess, the genius behind this heartwarming calendar, truly believes that kindness can work wonders, not only for those receiving it but also for the givers. Science backs this up, it's been shown to have a threefold effect, boosting endorphins not just in those directly involved but also in bystanders. She insists that these acts of kindness need not be grand or elaborate; they can be as small as letting someone merge in traffic, offering a hand with groceries, or simply sharing a smile with a stranger. According to Tess, kindness is akin to a muscle that can be developed and strengthened. Initially, one may need to make a conscious effort to be kind, but with time, it becomes second nature, turning individuals into more thoughtful, compassionate people.
"The joy you get from sharing kindness has immense benefits for your own personal wellbeing, as well as for those who are on the receiving end," Tess says, highlighting that kindness creates a win-win situation for all.
"I love the tradition of an advent calendar but thought there should be more to it than chocolate and gifts," says Tess. She saw an opportunity to create something of real significance that could involve the entire family.
The calendar's inception came during Christmas 2019 when Tess initially crafted a 'Kindness Calendar' for her family. In a heartwarming display of generosity, she offered it as a free digital download to her friends. The response was nothing short of remarkable, with 5,000 people downloading it within just five days. This overwhelming demand affirmed that families were yearning for something more profound amidst the often gift-centered holiday season.
In 2020, Tess's kindness calendars made their way into over 10,000 homes, showcasing the profound impact of the concept. When she started, Tess set an ambitious goal, to share 1 million random acts of kindness through her products by 2025. Astonishingly, she surpassed that goal this year! The impact has been enormous, reaching the homes of 45,000 and more. Just imagine, every person touched by an act of kindness, passing it forward in a ripple effect. This year, she hopes to see even more families embracing the idea, not just as a Christmas tradition but as a way of life.
Tess emphasizes that the best gifts don't come wrapped in paper but rather in the form of time, a simple smile, or acts of kindness, which have lasting positive effects. Through her calendar, she has personally witnessed how teaching children to be kind to themselves and others builds resilience and confidence. The 'Sharing Kindness Advent Calendar' serves as an engaging and fun starting point for families to introduce kindness and connection as a way of life.
This delightful calendar presents one easy-to-do 'kindness activity' for each day leading up to December 25. Additionally, it includes reusable magnetic stickers for creating a festive Christmas scene, a 'scratchie tracker' with positive affirmations, kindness challenge completion membership gifts, and a plethora of downloadable additions, such as kids' affirmation cards, diplomas, 'acts of kindness,' and thank you cards. This year, an additional version of the calendar is available, featuring a beach-themed, Aussie Christmas scene inspired by Burleigh Heads, as well as a Scandi-themed white Christmas version inspired by Tess's homeland of Sweden.
Tess Bell's 'Sharing Kindness Advent Calendar' is more than just a countdown to Christmas; it's a journey of transformation and a powerful reminder that kindness is the greatest gift of all. It paves the way for families to embrace a more compassionate, thoughtful way of life while building connections, fostering reflection, and illustrating that intentions, choices, and words have the power to make the world a better place.