#88 – Kindness
Did you know that kindness is contagious? Not only do we receive numerous benefits from being kind, but positive effects of kindness are experienced in the brains of everyone who witnesses the act of kindness. So, kindness really can make the world a happier place. That warm and fuzzy feeling you get when you are kind goes well beyond your thoughts; it actually shows up chemically in your body. Research suggests that kindness causes numerous chemicals like oxytocin, serotonin, and other “happy” chemicals to increase.
The Benefits Of Kindness
The Dalai Lama once said, “Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.” These simple yet potent words can bring us back to our true loving essence and remind us that we are always response-able for how we show up in every situation. Kindness is not a new phenomenon. Charles Darwin, well known for evolution, once argued that humans are social, caring beings with natural compassion and sympathy for each other. Being kind costs nothing, but everyone gains from it. It reminds us that everything is connected, and we are all in this together.
Facts About Kindness:
- According to researchers at Emory University, when you are kind to another person, your brain’s pleasure and reward centers light up, as if you were the recipient of the good deed.
- Acts of kindness give our love hormone levels a boost.
- Engaging in acts of kindness produces endorphins, the brain’s natural painkiller!
- Committing acts of kindness lowers blood pressure.
- A University of British Columbia Study studied a group of highly anxious individuals performing at least six acts of kindness a week. After one month, there was a significant increase in positive moods and relationship satisfaction and a decrease in social avoidance in socially anxious individuals.
- A 2010 Harvard Business School survey of happiness in 136 countries found that generous people were happiest overall.
- Being kind helps alleviate our lousy mood when stressed and allows us to experience more positive emotions.
- Research shows that doing random acts of kindness triggers the release of serotonin, a neurotransmitter that plays a role in mood stability, and oxytocin, a hormone that makes you feel connected to other people.
How can I make an impact?
Action 1: Global Goodness
- There are numerous opportunities each day to be kind.
- Speak kind words to others. Set an intention to say at least 10 kind things to others each day.
- Be kind on the road. Allow someone to cut ahead of you.
- Smile at people throughout your day.
- Say a kind gesture to your store clerk or give a compliment.
Action 2: Planet Protector
- All of Action 1
- Share a laugh with someone
- Be truly grateful for each moment so kindness can move through you.
- We are all entitled to bad days, but be conscious of your effect on others.
Action 3: Earth Angel
- All of Action 1 & 2
- Remember, the person before you, has all the inner resources necessary to effectively respond to each situation.
- Consciously look for the loving essence in others, as it is always present.
- Be kind to yourself. Learn to show yourself the kindness you regularly give others.