Acts of kindness don't have to cost you money or take a lot of time to do. They can be premeditated or spontaneous, an action or simply words. However you choose to do it, studies show that people who experience kindness are more like to pass it on which will ultimately create a happier world for everyone. Sounds good right?
Kindness: the quality of being friendly, generous, and considerate.
We all appreciate people showing us kindness. The warm feeling when someone holds the door open for you or offers you their seat on a busy bus. But did you know that it's not just the receiver of kindness that benefits from it? Research has shown that giving kindness to others, rather than to yourself can cause lasting wellbeing. Kindness triggers the same physiological changes in the brain that are associated with happiness. Acts of kindness can help with self esteem, improved mood and long lasting wellbeing.
What are the benefits?
Kindness stimulates the production of serotonin which benefits your health, keeps you calm, reduces stress and anxiety and makes you happy, research has also shown people to feel stronger and more energetic after helping others. If this all wasn't enough, kindness can help people to live longer. Altruism produces oxytocin, known as the 'cardio protective' hormone which reduces blood pressure. It can also help to build up strong networks of friends and family which has been found to reduce your risk of heart disease.
How do I do it?
Being kind doesn't need to cost you anything. Try a supportive smile to a stranger on the street, compliment a colleague on their work, phone an elderly relative for a catch up. LSW Mind Cards has an entire category dedicated to kindness with lots of ideas to get you started. Start building them into your daily behaviours and notice how much positive your outlook becomes.