When something good happens to you it can lift your spirits even if you are in one of the great funks. When someone gives you a surprise gift, or when you find your coffee has been paid for at the window by the person in front of you, the unexpected positivity radiates through you. That is the whole mindset behind the pay-it-forward movement which has been catching attention and catching on in recent years. You have likely even experienced it yourself in lines at coffee shops or stores. But this story has a bit of a different twist as it begins with the purchase of a book.
Ashley Jost and her friends had just made a pledge to read more books. A week later, a self-help book caught her eye while shopping at a Target in Columbia, Missouri. The 27-year-old bought the book, “Girl, Stop Apologizing,” and began reading it when she got home. Her dog began barking and she threw the book down on the table to get the animal to stop and something caught her eye when she went back – there was a $5 bill lying on the floor. The thing is, Ashley Jost didn’t carry cash so it wasn’t hers. Turns out that someone had decided that they were going to do something kind for some random stranger and had tucked it along with a note in the book.
The note read: “I was having a tough day. I thought maybe I could brighten someone else’s with this little surprise. Go buy a coffee, a donut or a face mask. Practice some self-care today. Remember that you are loved. You are amazing. You are strong. Love, Lisa.”
This note inspired Jost to share it on social media, which she did with this tweet on her Twitter account.
I just finished a chapter of a book I bought at Target in Columbia, Mo., this morning.
Afterward, I tossed it on the ottoman and $5 fell out onto the floor. Then I found this note. Wow. People are so cool. pic.twitter.com/U5fOCZjNRy
— Ashley Jost (@ajost) April 28, 2019
She also decided to pay it forward with her own surprise acts including once a day for a week, hiding surprise love notes and “lots of Starbucks gift cards” totaling five dollars a day in coffee shops, restaurants and libraries. The act and the social media share inspired others as well including her father who did something kind at a grocery store and others who shared their stories on social media. Jost also says she intends to do at least one kind thing a week from now on.
It’s remarkable how something simple like a note can change someones mindset. And the original Lisa is aware of what her act did; she contacted Ashley about it but you can read more about that in your Good News Story of the Day here. Then go out and do something kind for one another. Spread that love around and don’t forget to pay it forward!
Story from CNN.