Friday, March 11, 2011

Paying it Forward

If you know me, you know I love giving things away.  It goes beyond the candy I put in all the orders I ship and goody bags I give out at the wholesale shows. I give away a clock every day I work at Pike Place Market, too.

It's always the highlight of my day. I wait until the right person comes along, someone who loves a certain design but can't afford to buy it, someone who is having a bad day or lets it slip that its their birthday. I discreetly put that item in a bag, hand it to them and tell them it's a gift.  Often they refuse at first but I insist, explaining that this is a Paper Scissors Rock tradition and ask that in return I just ask that they do something kind for someone else - preferably a stranger. (And for the record I started doing this way before the move Pay It Forward movie came out!)

I believe every kindness, no matter how small makes a difference, and that together we can all make the world a better place. Corny? Sure, but here's the thing. The way I see it, each time we make someone smile, laugh or feel a little lighter, it's a ripple in the pond. Neale Donald Walsh wrote, "You could be the Angel for whom someone is waiting today". The world is a difficult place right now. why not be kinder to each other? What does that really cost us? The truth is, you never know what impact a tiny gesture can make, it could be much bigger than you think.

So I had an idea the other day. I love this tradition so much that I've decided to expand it by starting a  Pay It Forward Gift GIveaway Program. Any wholesale buyer who wants to be part of it can sign up. I will note it in their account and from now on, I will add a free gift item to each of their orders, which they can then give to any customer, asking them to continue the chain by doing something kind for someone else.

This is going to be on the honor system, the added item is not to be sold or given to friends. The idea is to extend kindness and generosity when it's least expected, and my hope is that they will feel as rewarded by these gestures as I do.