Pay It Forward


pay it forward Has everyone heard of this concept? There was a movie about this some years ago. I am not sure if this concept as such existed before the movie or not. The basic premise is that someone does something kind / needed for someone else – something that person or entity needs but cannot do or get on their own. Once that ‘Pay It Forward’ deed is done then that receiving person or entity is expected to do the same for someone else, thus pay it forward. I think in the movie they had to pay it forward to 3 others. It can be anything. Doing a task for someone, paying a bill for someone, giving them something they need but could never afford on their own, anything that makes someone else’s life better. Now we are not talking frivolous stuff here. It has to be something that makes a difference in the person’s life. The person does not even need to know it was you who did it for them.

For example: When this movie first aired it inspired a bunch of people to action. Someone going through the drive through at McDonalds paid for the order behind them. When that recipient tried to pay their bill they found it was already paid by the person who went through ahead of them. The recipient could not even thank the person because they had already driven off. What did the recipient do? They paid for the person behind them. This simple kindness was passed on and on that day.

What a better world we would live in if people did this everyday as a matter of routine. Rake that elderly neighbors yard without them knowing and make their life a little easier for one day. What do you get out of it? You get the satisfaction of knowing you did something that made someone else’s life better.

Isn’t there a saying about taking time to care for those in need for you never know when it might be one of God’s angels? Or something like that…

The whole point of this post is that a simple thing like ‘paying it forward’ could really change the world if we all did it. Help and treat others the way we would like to be helped and treated. Do something for someone else just because you can. One day when you least expect it and need it most it could come back to you by someone else paying it forward.

So what do you think? Is this something that could work? Have you ever experienced a ‘pay it forward’ as the giver or as the receiver? What happened?

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  1. Cheryl, agree with you completely. Personally help people on a continous basis. But sometimes it works against you since some people cannot handle the feeling that they didn't get, say a job, because of themselves but thanks to another person. Odd isn't it.

    • Geek Girl says:

      Like you I try to help people whenever I can. I also understand that some people do not take it well. In those instances if I feel like I really want to help them, I make sure they don't know who helped. Everyone needs help a little help some time. 🙂

  2. namirusso says:

    In Buddhism, there's something similar called "universal Karma," which is not as drastic as paying for a stranger's tab, but knowing that if you help an old woman across the street, one day a stranger will repay that kindness by helping your mother. Thanks for bringing this up – I've been meaning to "Netflix" that movie…wonder if it's on Instant Watch?

    • Geek Girl says:

      Every so often this comes to my mind and I think I should share this. You never know when your kindness will be returned to you. 🙂