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The Designing North Project: Bob Votruba – One Million Acts of Kindness

Why is Bob Votruba designing north*?

For most of us, reading headlines about mass killings elicits gasps of horror. The mental images sit with us for a while, and we find ourselves contemplating how on Earth any human being could do such a thing to other human beings. Eventually, the routine of daily life begins to soften the hard edges of those images, until finally they dissolve from our daily consciousness.

No so for Bob Votruba.

Mr. Votruba was so aghast at the horror of the 2007 Virginia Tech mass shooting in which 32 innocent people were massacred, that he was changed forever. Or at least for the last eight years and counting.

For Mr. Votruba, the tragedy became an epiphany. He quit his job as a 35 year veteran in the home building business, sold his major possessions, and set out on a journey – more of a pilgrimage or odyssey really – to promote his new life’s mission.

“One Million Acts of Kindness is a goal, a lifetime goal, for each and every person who’s young enough. Anybody under the age of 30 mathematically can still personally perform one million acts of kindness through little things, some of them bigger things, and what I like to call ‘kind acts from the heart.’” [Quote from 27east.com]

He now travels the country in his bus, spreading his message and bestowing kindnesses upon others – an inspiration to us all.

Who knows? Perhaps your own small act of kindness will soften a hard heart at a desperate moment some day.

*Many people in this world “add a little extra” to whatever they do: their career, how they live, the relationships they nurture, or just a random act of kindness – and we consider that *designing north* – designing your life and living it just north of the average bell curve.

Bob is designing north. Are you or someone you know? Tell us. We’re looking for the global count.

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