KindLike.Us: A new kindness community

KindLike.UsThis is the second part of my series on Kindness. Last Thursday, I told you about the kindness of a stranger who helped me and the benefits of being kind.

Today, I’m sharing an interview I did with Tim Piazza, the developer of a new site, KindLike.Us. This very creative and active site enables people interested in kindness to join together in a social community. Note that on my left sidebar, I liked this site so much that I have already become a member:~)

I believe that you, my readers, will like this site as much as I do. So,without further adieu here’s my interview with Tim, the creative creator of KindLike.Us:~)

What drew you to the idea of kindness, Tim?

First of all, Sara, thank you for taking an interest in our project. It’s heartwarming that the very first person outside of our family that I contacted when setting up the site responded so enthusiastically. Your blog post, Life Lessons: The Value of Kindness was such a perfect example of the sort of stories I hope people will share on KindLike.Us.

Gosh, I could write for pages about this. I have been reflecting on what makes a person happy for a long time. I was taught that being successful in business was a prerequisite to happiness, but there are many happy people who live very simply and many people with extravagant lives who are unhappy. If I buy something or do something I want, it makes me happy for a while, but it’s not lasting. On the other hand, if I am kind to someone, I feel happier, and they feel better too. Happiness, I believe, is a direct result of being kind to others.

Kindness is the fundamental quality that builds good communities. It’s the glue that bonds friendships. Kindness motivates us to act better, live better, to be better. Being Kind is the most attractive quality a person can project, and it is within everyone’s grasp to be kind. I think that worldwide, people understand the value and meaning of kindness, but in the USA, kindness seems more burdened with other attachments like fear and risk. The reason probably has to do with a society’s economic wealth. Money sets us apart from each other.

I recently met Chris Brogan and Woody Collins at a social media conference in Indiana. Woody told Chris about how he is working to improve the conditions of people in Africa who live under conditions of extreme poverty. The next morning during his keynote presentation, Chris urged people to help Woody because what he was doing makes a real difference. This was my inspiration. I realized that I could use social media to help people like Woody.

What do you hope to accomplish with KindLike.Us?

Our vision for KindLike.Us is that it becomes a social networking site for people who view kindness as a fundamental value. I started using computers in the early 1980’s when online social communities originated. They were crude and text based, but we could hold live chats, post in forums, and share files. Each community had its own personality, and people joined them because they felt some affinity for the site.

Facebook is great, and it proves that our online interactions can enhance and extend our real life relationships. But Facebook is a metropolis. It’s not safe to be friends with everybody.

KindLike.Us is an intentional community for people who make conscious choices about the quality of their life. We want KindLike.Us to be the Facebook of caring, thoughtful people.

In the opening Welcome, you state that “We need only to encourage a “kindness economy” to increase its value to others.” What do you mean by a “kindness economy?”

Usually, we think of economics as being about dollars and wealth. There is a finite supply of wealth and it is something we must acquire in order to meet our basic needs. Kindness, on the other hand, is in an infinite supply, we already possess it, but we do not view it in the same way as we do financial wealth. Is the more successful person the one who has an abundance of money and little happiness, or the one who has little money but is filled with joy? The answer depends on whether you value money more than happiness. I believe people who place more value on happiness than on money live more fulfilling lives, and I think it’s something we should all encourage.

What are the benefits of joining KindLike.Us?

Good, an easy question! If you spend just 5 minutes a day thinking about being kind, reading about it, or telling a story about it, you will tend to be a kinder person. Being connected to others through kindness has a dramatic impact on your sense of purpose and feeling of wellness. Being connected through kindness makes people happy. We want to build a community where people will want to spend at least a few minutes a day thinking and sharing around the idea of kindness.

KindLike.Us is very easy to use. People can chat, blog, share music and photos, link to YouTube videos, send messages to friends, and join groups. Members can redesign their own page to look the way they want and customize their privacy settings. You can add widgets and HTML code, even add RSS feeds from another blog to your own page. For people who already publish online, KindLike.Us can easily extend what they’re already doing in social media. This is great for non-profit agencies who would like to connect with people on KindLike.Us.

If someone has an article or a post they think might be perfect for your site, what should they do?

If someone is writing the sort of blog that would be great for our site, we really hope that they become a member. Members can post their own blogs, and we can feature them on the front page. Members can always send private messages to me.

Many blogs give you the opportunity to add your web address along with your name, but search engines do not follow those links. KindLIke.Us is much more robust. You can have links in articles and they will get followed back to that site. You can put links and even photos in comments as well. You do have to be a member to use these great features, but there is absolutely no cost to becoming a member of KindLIke.Us.

Other than the site, what keeps you busy in your life?

Work is definitely a big part of my life. The advertising agency I work for asked me to be the social media and online marketing strategist. I am constantly learning and constantly challenged, and I get to bring the insights I acquire along the way to KindLike.Us. My wife Tiffany is a social worker on the homeless outreach team in our community. We play traditional Irish music with our friends and our children, and we live in a log home on four acres of land. Even though our land is mostly tree-covered, it’s amazing how much time it takes to keep up the property!

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Thank you so much for taking this time with me, Sara. I really appreciate being able to talk about KindLike.Us. I encourage your readers to come visit the site and I hope the will also become members!

You are so welcome Tim. Thanks for sharing about your site:~)

30 comments on “KindLike.Us: A new kindness community

  1. This site sounds awesome! Thanks for sharing it — as well as the great interview — on your site. 🙂
    .-= Positively Present´s last blog ..the best ways to organize your living space (and your life) =-.

    • Sara says:

      @ Dani — Thank you. Tim made the interview very easy for me. His site is so much fun. I like that he’s come up with the idea of getting people together around kindness. I think this is special:~)

  2. Talon says:

    Wonderful interview, Sara. What a great idea for a website. It’s always amazed me what a bashing kindness gets when it comes to business. There’s this idea that in order to be successful you have to be ruthless. I think nothing could be further from the truth and people like you and Tim are helping to make the world a truly better world. It’s amazing what like-minded, positive people can accomplish.
    .-= Talon´s last blog ..Do squirrels read? =-.

    • Sara says:

      @ Talon — I love the idea of a social community for kindness…think of the things the members could do. For example, have a kindness blog day, where everybody write a post about a time when they were either kind or received an act of kindness. I agree with you about like-minded people and just think what synergy could be created by a community that focuses on positive concepts, like kindness, compassion or forgiveness:~)

  3. Carol says:

    I’m so glad you did a follow up on this, Sara. I’m looking forward to exploring the site. I really believe that simple acts of kindness can change the world, and I plan to put that intention into practice every day!
    .-= Carol´s last blog ..Stress Eating Warning! =-.

    • Sara says:

      @ Carol — I do hope you’ll explore Tim’s site. Both he and his wife, Tiffany blog frequently on the site and they always have excellent example of kindness. I agree that each time we are kind, we add something good to our world:~)

  4. Carla says:

    I just joined and cant wait to participate! Thanks for bringing this to our attention, Sara.
    .-= Carla´s last blog ..Green and Chic’s most popular posts =-.

    • Sara says:

      @ Carla — I am so pleased that you joined. We’ll have to talk to each other. It will nice to have friends to share ideas about kindness. I like the idea of sharing stories. videos and chatting with others throughout the world about the importance of being kind. We’ll make kindness a healthy virus…one that people can catch and be glad they did:~)

  5. Tabitha Blue says:

    This was a great interview and and awesome new site I hadn’t heard of before. I love your concept of a series on kindness 🙂

    ~Tabitha
    .-= Tabitha Blue´s last blog ..Three Years. =-.

    • Sara says:

      @ Tabitha — Thank you for your KIND thoughts:~) KindLike.Us is a wonderful idea. I really liked what Tim said about an intentional community, one that focuses around a subject that the members feel strongly about…I think he picked the perfect one…kindness:~)

  6. Tim Piazza says:

    Sara, thank you again for suggesting this interview. I really enjoyed the process and I appreciate the opportunity to “think out loud”.

    I hope that any of your friends who visit the site feel welcome to make suggestions that will make the site better. I hope the site provides not only a community of like-minded people, but also a way for bloggers like yourself to connect with the community and great ideas to blog about. 😎

    -Tim
    .-= Tim Piazza´s last blog ..An Incredible Story of Food and Need =-.

    • Sara says:

      @ Tim — You did a great job with this interview and with your site. Don’t worry, most of my readers like to express their thoughts. Therefore, if they have suggestions, I’m confident they’ll let you know.

      What I hope they’ll also do is spread the word about KindLike.Us within their communities. I know there are many people who would enjoy writing, reading and chatting about kindness…and remember, it’s also HEALTHY to do this. Thanks again for this interview:~)

  7. Hi Sara and Tim – Devoting time and space to kindness is a wonderful idea! It’s easy to forget sometimes that kindness is very abundant. This site seems like it will be a great reminder. 🙂 I will have to check this out.
    .-= Amanda Linehan´s last blog ..The Power To Create =-.

  8. Hi Sara,

    Thank you again for giving me the heads up on Tim’s site (via Twitter). When I visited I found the concept to be very intriguing. Can you imagine? A social networking community of kind people – how cool is that.

    Having Tim here is a great idea. Not only are we able to learn more about his new site, but a little about him, too.

    Although I haven’t joined yet, I will be.
    .-= Barbara Swafford´s last blog ..Recipe For Blog Success =-.

    • Sara says:

      @ Barbara — I see Tim replied to you about his site. It’s obvious the excitement and passion he has for what he’s doing. I think that’s one thing that made me really want to interview him. He’s into this with his heart. When you read his blog at KindLike.Us, you can see this. I look forward to chatting with about kindness when you join. As always, I really appreciate you stopping by:~)

  9. Tim Piazza says:

    @Amanda It is easy to forget! But perhaps it is because kindness is only apparent through action, but the potential for kindness is always just one act away. If our habit is to be kind, we experience a kinder world. Oh! I have another slogan!

    Kindness is Habit Forming

    I started a thread on the KindLike.Us forum to collect slogans that we can use on bumper stickers and window decals. I want to have some made so that people can share the message of kindness easily. If you have suggestions, you can post them at http://www.kindlike.us/forum/topics/what-are-your-favorite

  10. Tim Piazza says:

    @Barbara I too think it will be very cool. Just think of the difference we can make if someone like Woody Collins is buying mosquito nets for mothers and children in the Congo, and we’re able to raise money through our community by holding a contest, a raffle, or ebay auctions. Mosquito nets cost $1.50 each and they save lives. We could have such an incredible impact. $1,500 can save the lives of 1,000 children.

    This is at the heart of why I think KindLike.Us is important. The good we can do as a community far outreaches the good any of us can do as individuals. There’s something very impacting about saying to oneself “I made a difference in the world today”. I know there are people like me who want to make a difference, but are better at jockeying a keyboard than surrendering their lives to a cause like Woody. Those are people who can be our eyes and hands.

    I’m sorry. I’m getting very excited and philosophical here. I don’t mean to soapbox. This whole process, creating the site, talking to people about it; it’s personally transforming.

    -Tim

  11. Hey Tim And Sara,
    Such a lovely concept. I am all for it. Tim I am gonna head over to your kindness world right now.

    And Sara sweetie, big hug to you for introducing us to such Kindness. Keep up the good work youve been doing.
    .-= Zeenat{Positive Provocations}´s last blog ..Lost Souls – A Tribute =-.

    • Sara says:

      @ YEAH Zeenat. You’ve been BUSY from what Tim says!!! I need to get going about setting up my page.

      Zeenat, you are so nice. Every time you visit, I get a smile from your comments. Thanks:~)

  12. Tim Piazza says:

    Zeenat created her own page, customized the colors, joined a group, and created an RSS feed from her blog, Positive Provocations. Wonderful!
    .-= Tim Piazza´s last blog ..The Days That Followed September 11, 2009 =-.

  13. Ribbon says:

    Brilliant!

    thanks for being kind and sharing 🙂

    best wishes Ribbon

    • Sara says:

      @ Ribbon — With the bloggers, like you, who make up my community it is much easier to remember to be kind. I’m lucky about that. I think that’s the beauty of Tim’s site. Working together for kindness and developing a community provides a constant reminder of the importance of kindness. Thanks for sharing your thought and visiting:~)

  14. Mama Zen says:

    I’m definitely intrigued!
    .-= Mama Zen´s last blog ..Review: The Mystery Of The Third Lucretia =-.

    • Sara says:

      @ Mama Zen — That’s so cool…your comment matches your post title:~)I’ll have to go visit our site because I just looked at this book at Borders, but hesitated to buy it…I’ll be interested to know what you say about it. Do check out Tim’s site as it is an interesting idea!

  15. Tim Piazza says:

    Our community is small, but just starting out. Please come help us grow!
    .-= Tim Piazza´s last blog ..An Unforgettable Date =-.

  16. Davina says:

    This is great Sara. Kindness is easily forgotten in our rushed lives… even when we come by it naturally it is easy to take it for granted. Thanks for featuring Tim’s website. And, great interview BTW.
    .-= Davina´s last blog ..Island Thyme Bed & Breakfast =-.

    • Sara says:

      @ Davina — WELCOME BACK! You have been missed, my friend:~) I hope you had a wonderful vacation. Since doing these posts, I’ve been really paying attention to being kind. I’m been amazed at how much better I feel when I do a kind act. We’ll see if I can remember this when I’m going through the multiple security checks at the airport for my trip to England:~) Do check out Tim’s site. I know you will like it!

  17. Tony Single says:

    When Tony’s had his sleepy time, Tony’s totally going to check out this site! Yeah!

    Why is Tony speaking in the third person all of a sudden? 😛
    .-= Tony Single´s last blog ..How Pole Dancing Was Made =-.

    • Sara says:

      @ Tony — Maybe the other Tony has come out given that you’re experiencing a lack of sleep. That can happen sometimes. I’ll be visiting soon. I’m still trying to recover from a whirlwind trip to England:~)

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