October 10, 2019, marked the inaugural Live Like Sam Day honoring the memory of Sam Jackenthal. During the first-ever celebration, we asked others to keep Sam’s memory alive by performing acts of kindness throughout the day. With the help of our community and our friends at the U.S. Ski & Snowboard Team, the first Live Like Sam Day was a huge success, inspiring people all over the world to treat others with the kindness they deserve. While Live Like Sam Day may only come once a year, it’s important for us to incorporate acts of kindness in our lives every day.
Changing the World with Kindness
On October 10, Live Like Sam and our partners did an amazing job of flooding the internet with kindness. What began as a small effort to honor Sam’s memory in his hometown of Park City soon became a massive inspiration for people all over the world. In fact, one new Live Like Sam community member from England took the time to share how much Sam’s story impacted them after reading about it on the inaugural celebration.
“I didn’t know Sam as I am British and that sort of news doesn’t come around back where I live,” they explained. “But I am a ski racer and by the looks of it have a similar attitude to that of what Sam had. I want to thank you for letting Sam live on because as I was reading about him, it made me remember all of the smiles that I have seen on people’s faces, and it made me slightly more hopeful that humanity may actually be able to come together and celebrate each other. After all, time is luck.”
Others who were impacted by Sam’s legacy took time to give thanks to the organization.
“My little sister is a ski jumper and she just received one of the scholarships in honor of Sam and all I can say is thank you for continuing to let the amazing person that Sam was influence so many young, dedicated athletes and help them get to where they want to be!” raved one Live Like Sam community member.
As word of the celebration spread online, many took the time to commit themselves to perform an act of kindness. One Twitter user shared plans to go to a local children’s hospital to hand out teddy bears and spend time with them that weekend. Picabo Street Academy students each made vows to commit acts of kindness like teaching peers a new skill, cheering up a friend, and helping others with homework. Other online activities included giving treats to neighbors, sending balloons in the sky in honor of Sam, and leaving positive notes for strangers in the grocery store to find.
While Live Like Sam Day may be over, we encourage everyone to make kindness a part of their everyday lives. In fact, studies have shown that the positive response we get from performing random acts of kindness is a chemical reaction in the brain that releases mood-boosting hormones throughout your body. Practicing kindness has even been recommended as a form of treatment for some forms of depression, anxiety, and pain.
Making Kindness Count All Year
Kindness can improve levels of oxytocin — sometimes called “the love hormone” — and dopamine, leading to increased mood. If you’re looking to incorporate kindness into your daily life, the good news is there’s no shortage of activities for you to get your “helper’s high.” Consider some of the following to make kindness count all year long in your life:
- Live PC Give PC: Once a year, Park City gets together to donate time and money to local nonprofits that give back to our community. When you make your donation to Live Like Sam this year, you can double your giving with just one donation thanks to our matching grant donors!
- Clothing or Food Drives: Your local soup kitchen or homeless shelter may have opportunities for you to provide clothing and food to those less fortunate. In Park City, the Youth Sports Alliance hosts a winter clothing drive each year to help those in need. Do some research to find a local nonprofit dedicated to helping those less fortunate in your community.
- Volunteer: Plenty of opportunities exist for volunteerism all across the country. Sam Jackenthal’s sister, Skylar, is currently volunteering her time to work with underprivileged children in Africa and provide them the education they need. Our social media manager, Carly Severino, spends time rescuing and rehabilitating dogs that have been abused. The best way to get involved with volunteering is by identifying a cause that’s dear to you. Once you nail that part down, participation will come easily!
- Communication: Take time out of your day to tell others the way you feel about them. As our newest community member in England wisely noted, “Time is luck.” We never know we’ll see our loved ones next, and it’s important to let the people in your life know how much they matter to you while they’re still around to hear it.
By incorporating kindness into your life every day, you can create a better world and — by extension — a better you.
Live Like Sam Every Day
Ask others what living like Sam means to them, and you’re bound to get a wide range of responses. But one overarching theme remains the same: Because Sam always took time to be kind and considerate to others, he left the world a much better place. Those who knew him tout his positivity, inclusivity, and kindness as the characteristics that stick out most in their minds. And those who didn’t know him are inspired to seize the day and make every moment count with those they love.
When we make kindness a part of our daily lives, we embody the same characteristics Sam had. Challenge yourself to make acts of kindness a part of your routine on Live Like Sam Day, and every day of the year. We promise, you’ll be glad you did!
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