Extreme Kindness

Extreme Kindness

It’s Been A Long Time Baby!

Oh, how I’ve missed you!
I have so much to share…. But this is just a start. More to come.

Found this in a book by Shel Silverstein called “Where the Sidewalk Ends”
Thought you might appreciate it. It made me remember how great it feels to be a kid. Carefree and stoked!

Hug O War

I will not play at tug o war,
I’d rather play at hug o war,
Where everyone hugs
Instead of tugs,
Where everyone giggles
And rolls on the rug,
Where everyone kisses,
And everyone grins,
And everyone cuddles,
And everyone wins.


I am loving this kindness!

If you get the chance check out some of the radical videos on youtube. Type “Free Hugs” or “Kindness” and prepare to connect with the fact that the world really does have a lot of potential. People are good.

Have a great day.


Kindness World Change!

I thought you may be interested to take action on this email we recieved this morning! I’m game!


I am writing to try and create an epidemic of kindness and change. My friend and extraordinary leader, Jason, compelled me and many of my friends to change the world in some way in celebration of his birthday on September 22, 2006. He is looking for everyone he knows to make a commitment to change, kindness, and leadership. I challenge your amazing Kindness Crew to do this as well, and possibly challenge all the people that visit your site to do the same. 9/22 or any other day can be a great day to develop change even if it’s with a simple smile or kind word. I hope we are able to create this change. Thanks for your awesome commitment to kindness!




An amazing couple of weeks!

Here it is….

These last 2 weeks have been exciting ones.

Starting with an awesome interview on a radio show out of Memphis called “Talk about Service” with Ed Horrell. Ed is a switched on guy who is, as he astutely put it, is “drinking the same juice” as the Kindness Crew. I would have to agree. All the projects Ed is involved in seem to have pertinent applications for the practice of kindness. Take, his book for example: Kindness Revolution: The company wide culture shift that inspires customer service. Ed is a leader in the field of customer service and in this book looks at how, by using a culture of kindness and consideration a company can fundamentally change how the work with customers. He has a lot of great things to say about kindness in the business world and his sites have a lot of interesting material.

Check out his radio program here (our podcast is near the top)

And his personal website here.

The next inspiring event was a trip to Saltspring Island where Val and I had an refreshing, relaxing and rejuvenating brainstorming day with one of the founders of the Virtues Project, John Kavelin If you are not familiar with the project here is their vision and website link:

The Vision of The Virtues Project is to serve humanity by supporting the moral and spiritual development of people of all cultures, by helping them to remember who they really are and to live by their highest values.

This project is doing incredible things around the world. When you put a few focused people in a gorgeous house with great food and open minds the possibilities are endless. We explored several ways personally and professionally we could make the worlds a kinder and more connected place Val and I were both stoked to be get connected with all in attendance. Mover and shaker Amelia Pawlak from Pawlak Productions and Non Profit advisor extrodionaire Micqualyn Waldie from the Goldstream Salmon Enhancement Society (and about a 1000 of the non-profits) rounded out this fantastic five. Good ideas are brewing and the world is a better place for this meeting here are a few pictures…



Between the two of these events I was on a blissful vacation with the Gillies family in the East Kootneys where I spent relaxing, hanging with my girl, and soaking up lake life.

Here are a few shots….




Have an awesome week and feel free to post your summer adventures in kindness!


Credit where credit is due!

I have heard that to be grateful is one of the signs of a happy and successful person. Well, I must be pretty successful gauging by all the fantastic individuals in my life lately. I want to send out some grateful vibes to some of the people in my life who commit acts of kindness in my life.

-Tracy and Graham for producing life in the form of Luke Sherman any one who wants to send them a congrats email can at grahamsherman@gmail.com. He just popped out today.

-Michelle for being one of the most interesting, inspired and fun loving women on the face of this planet. Thanks for one of the greatest Tofino trips of all time.

-Clare “with no eyes” for being funny, intelligent and trusting. Thanks for being such a great travel buddy. Aaaargh!

-Mark Lutterll for being an insanely generous and great friend who also gave me a kiteboard.

-Rik, David, Clancy my Dad and Mom for doing work on the property at Goldbridge. Word was that they were building in 42 degrees. I really appreciate it.

-To Jay and Carl. Thanks for continually staying in touch and connected even if we are far away. We love our ‘chuther.

-Chris thanks for being openhearted. You are great.

-Chris thanks for teaching me to kitesurf and launching and catching my kite today.

-Joanne. Thanks for loving me and making the effort, continually, to connect even when communication isn’t smooth. Really, I am so lucky to have you. Also thanks for all the fish!

-Mike and Greg. For without you this would not be possible. Visions and manifestations abounding.

-Merv and Cathleen. Thanks for following your hearts to each other. Also thanks in advance for the…. you know what!

-George. Thanks for knocking in a cheerful tone when you were testing the fire alarms in the house.

-George in NC. Thanks for being a great friend and an all around solid guy. Massive hug to you and your partner.

-Richard and Ross. Thanks for believing in me and my abilities enough to make me a team rider for Ocean Rodeo.

-Paul. Thanks for being friendly and helpful and modest.

-Steve. Thanks for being a mentor. The dash IS important.

-You. I really appreciate you hitting the site. Thank you. Hopefully this week you’ll be committing some RAK’s that make others feel successful and lucky to be alive.

There are about a million other people in my life who deserve thanks but I’d rather wait until I see you. Thanks in the time being.



Kindness as a first reaction.

While attending university in Victoria several years ago I had an experience that shaped the way I participate in compassionate action.

It had been a particularly wearisome week and I was marching across the expansive Uvic campus with my nose buried in a book. I was pretty tuned out to the rest of the world. My directive was clear: ‘Get to my next class with as much speed, as little distraction and the maximum information stuffed into my already gorged cranium’ I skipped quickly across grassy knolls and sidewalk curbs taking the most direct route possible. I was just hitting near perfect pace when my cadence was instantly broken.

“Attention! Arrt!” A voice boomed. I halted, spun around and instantly was nearly sucked from the curb (which I was apparently traveling over), by the wind from a passing delivery truck!

When I had regained my balance I was facing a young man, my age, with a slightly embarrassed expression on his face.

“I mean…Watch out!” he said with a smile and a nervous laugh, having blurted out the first thing that came to his mind.

I let out a nervous laugh myself as the blood began to rush back into my face.

We both stopped for a few minutes to talk and laugh. I thanked him for saving me from certain truck grill mutilation. Stunned but joyful, we shook hands and went our separate ways.

Upon reflection of this episode I realized how imbedded within the human programming it is to help. We all have it. It’s the first inclination to take action, (in any language) to help when the situation dictates, even with total strangers. Marc Ian Barasch describes this reaction in, “Field Notes on a Compassionate Life” when he sites interviews Holocaust rescuers. When asked to describe why they would endanger their own lives to harbor Jews from the Nazis one rescuer simply stated, “The hand of compassion was faster than the calculus of reason.”

I realized that when my Qubequois compatriot yelled out he did so because he believed that it was important enough to act immediately. Forget embarrassment? You bet. When choosing to act, he didn’t even engage it. He just moved on that first compassionate impulse. Given that we all have those immediate notions isn’t it important enough to act immediately for the betterment of the planet? To act on these impulses or at the very least promote them within the hierchary of your decision making process?

So, here is my challenge for this week:

Pay attention. Listen to you initial impulses. Be brave and engage in impulsive, heartfelt and compassionate action.


High on Kindness!

Adventure abounds! Manalive am I ever stoked!

Recently Chris, myself, Mark Lutterll and our friends Frank and Jessica, spent a couple of days summating Mt’ Adams a 12,281 ft peak in Washington State located about 30 km away from the smoldering Mt. St Helens. The weather was perfect, the mountain was beautiful and the people we met were incredible. From the park rangers, to the recipients of our congratulatory high 5’s everyone was exceptionally friendly and helpful.

At one point in our early morning ascent, I paused to grab a picture of the deep orange sunrise exploding around me creating a shadow of the mountain to the west. With clumsy, cold fingers I dropped my new camera case and it went skidding down the hill to oblivion…. or so I thought. Apparently a local climber with two super dogs spotted my case skipping down the glacier and sent one of his hounds to fetch it. When we both arrived at the top he returned my case with a smile and a handshake. Really, it was just awesome! It’s people like these who get me excited about the future of the world.

My challenge this week is to try a random act of kindness while doing some physical activity!

Whether that’s saying “Good morning!” to everyone on your day break run or piggybacking an old lady across the street, just make it happen, and have some fun with the journey!

Enjoy the video. Let me know what you think!


The Kindness Crew Meets Craig Kielburger

Last week Chris and I went to see a strikingly inspirational lecture. It was well attended by all ages and appreciated enough that it received a standing ovation. Craig Keilburger, one of the founders of Free the Children, has always been a hero to us and so you can imagine our stoke when we discovered he was speaking in Victoria.

Craig spoke with heartfelt and sustained passion for an hour and a half. He had the audience both moved to tears and uplifted with potential. His genuine message to literally “Free the Children” from factories and sweatshops worldwide resonated strongly with all listening. During the Q and A period several young kids stood up, (in front of hundreds of people) and let Craig know that he not only had their admiration and support but their commitment as well.

This lecture was one of the most engaging and genuine presentations I have seen and I would highly recommend…

Exploring out the website,

Reading the book,

Or seeing the lecture.

Before departing for Turkey to continue his work Craig stayed behind to meet the audience. Chris and I got the chance to meet him and I cut together this bizarre little video with some footage taken on my crappy digital camera.

P.S. Many thank yous to to Dani, Chris’ partner, for alerting us to the fact that Craig was in town and for capturing the moment on a less than perfect camera.



T-shirt Challenge!

This weeks kindness crew challenge….

Buy a Kindness Crew shirt from the website , (or make one) and photograph yourself in a crazy or extreme position! You get bonus points if you’re doing a random act of kindness! Have fun!
Here’s my bro Jacob Hanson in Alaska in front of a real life Moose!



There is method to my madness!

If you are a repeat viewer of extremekindness.com, or more specifically my blog, you may notice seemingly disparate posts thinly loosely tied together by a thread of kindness. They may seem random, however, they are all part of a master plan to put surfing pictures on the Internet! Ha Ha Ha! Yes, I’ve been scheming for months to find a way to make it all fit and fulfill my dream to make surfing a mandatory part of my work here at the Extreme Kindness. I’m getting there!

A couple of weeks ago you may have noticed a “Service Wipeout” post on the blog. The wipeout occurred while doing a beach cleanup with Surfrider Victoria, (of which I am a member of the executive team) Continuing on that theme I’d like to draw your attention to an event that epitomizes the spirit of both “Kindness in Sport” and putting “Passion into Action”

The Surfrider Clean Water Classic

Last weekend we ventured south to Westport Washington with funkloving crew of Canadians to compete in this Pro/Am surf contest designed to raise money for local Surfrider chapters. The competitors’ entry fee includes a year’s membership to Surfrider, (a non-profit environmental organization dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s oceans, waves and beaches for all people, through conservation, activism, research and education) and entry into the contest. The weekend is filled with great events, amazing music, good vibes and epitomizes the spirit of having fun while making a difference. This is activism that is pretty easy to connect with. The community of Westport is always accommodating and even the hardest of locals pleasantly tolerate the flocks of imported surfers for the weekend. There are steadfast volunteers who consistently do all that is necessary to make the event run smoothly through sideways rain and blazing sun.

Basically put, the event is awesome. It perfectly suits it’s purpose. It creates awareness, cleans the beach and promotes positive connection between surfers on the northwest coast. If you know of an event that perfectly captures the spirit of kindness on many different levels please post it.

Enjoy the pictures. More to come (All photos taken by that same radical bro who took our cover shot for “A Call to Arms”, the one and only Dave Aharonian!)





Yep, kindness is just trucking along here. All sorts of fun stuff on the slate. One especially cool thing is that Do One Nice Thing has featured us on their site! Explore the site if you haven’t already. They are great people taking great action. Enjoy.


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