Be kind. I teach this simple message to my children when they are fighting, to my clients when they have jealousy or anger issues, to friends, colleagues, students and to myself, simply that – be kind.
It’s so easy for us to get caught up in our own lives and the daily hassles that life might bring, and sometimes we take the simple things in life for granted. When was the last time you sat back and appreciated something amazing in your life or felt grateful for the simple things around us? Sometimes we need to pinch ourselves and just look around us for opportunities to be kind and offer kindness.
“Unexpected kindness is the most powerful, least costly, and most underrated agent of human change.” – Bob Kerrey.
Always being kind, no matter the person or situation, is a simple way to dramatically improve our world. The best thing about it is that being kind requires no rules, laws, or government regulation (topical here at the moment). It’s a way for humanity to take back…well…our humanity. We as individuals can lead by example and maybe, just maybe, those who lead our communities, organisations, and countries will follow suit, showing that in the end, one thing that really matters is how kind we are to each other.
What is ‘An Act of Kindness’?
So what constitutes an act of kindness? Loosely defined, an act of kindness is a spontaneous gesture of goodwill toward another human being, an animal, or our planet. A state of compassion that generates kind words and generous deeds that are deep within all of us. Many believe that children are innately kind souls, who practice goodness of the heart naturally. Though in reality we know this is not universally and consistently true (especially us parents know that, right?), many believe that aspects of life and experience start to deplete kindness.
Adopt an attitude of kindness, and you’ll be amazed by the ways in which you grow, personally, professionally, in your relationships and other aspects of your life.
The Psychological Benefits that Come with Random Acts of Kindness:
Science supports that these little acts of kindness can have a big emotional impact. The ripples are real. Whether a giver, a receiver or even simply an observer of a kindness, we are positively impacted both individually and collectively.
● Happiness: Performing acts of kindness makes us healthier and happier. Research shows that being kind measurably boosts wellbeing in many ways. In fact, the more acts of kindness we carry out, the happier we are.
● Generosity: Further, it turns out that kindness truly is contagious. According to Psychology Today, witnessing acts of kindness makes a person more inclined to “pay it forward.” The natural high you get when you observe an act of kindness makes you want to act more altruistically toward others.
● Gratitude: As the lucky receiver of unexpected kindness — we experience gratitude. Research shows that, not only do feelings of gratitude enhance our well-being but gratitude motivates us to want to “share and increase the good we have received.”
7 Simple Ways to Show Kindness to Others:
In today’s political and cultural climate, kindnesses and the happiness they create are more important than ever. Random acts of kindness remind us of our foundational connection as humans. They disrupt today’s pervasive negativity and distrust. They create a place for us in a chain of strangers, our greater human tribe, united in gratitude and delight.
“Love and kindness are never wasted. They always make a difference. They bless the one who receives them, and they bless you, the giver.” – Barbara De Angelis.
Wherever your kindness and generosity begins, it does involve an intentional approach to get started. Here are a few suggestions to help you in sharing random acts of kindness with those individuals who cross your path.
1. Has somebody been there for you recently, helped you out, or just been a good friend or colleague? It’s easy to take things or people for granted, but imagine how nice it would be to let them know how much you appreciate them. A thank you card, a little note, a bunch of flowers or a box of chocolates, just show somebody you care and that you are grateful for what they do!
2. Do something for charity. A sponsored run or walk, an office bake-off, something fun to get your colleagues or friends involved. Not only will it make you feel good but it will also be for an amazing cause.
3. Let somebody go in front of you in the queue. It’s just a nice thing to do and we should be doing more of it. The same goes for giving way to a driver when you are in the car, we all seem to rush everywhere and cut each other up or get enraged at others doing so.
4. Hold the door open for somebody. It’s good manners and it’s something we should all be teaching our children. It doesn’t cost anything to have manners. A please and a thank you, smiling to the security man at work, a simple “good morning” to people at work, it’s good to be polite.
5. Talk to people. Have you noticed a colleague who looks a bit down or stressed at the moment? Did you know your neighbour just got back from his holiday? Ask people how they are, what they are up to this weekend, show an interest in somebody else’s life other than your own…it’s good to talk!
6. It takes 60 seconds to send a message expressing gratitude and appreciation; those 60 seconds can go a long way to spread kindness in the world. Make sending a sincerely kind message to friends, coworkers, family members, community leaders, etc. a daily habit.
7. Show others that you appreciate them no matter where they come from, what their belief system is, or what situation they find themselves in. Smile with everyone…your neighbours, your family members, the homeless guy on the corner, and the clerk at the grocery store. You’ll receive smiles in return and you’ll instantly feel better, as will the people you smile at.
“Remember there’s no such thing as a small act of kindness. Every act creates a ripple with no logical end.” – Scott Adams.
Can you challenge yourself to do a good deed every week, every day, every month? Show some gratitude, a gesture of good will, show compassion, cheer somebody up and let them know you appreciate them. It doesn’t have to cost a penny and it can make a huge difference to somebody’s day! The start of the festive season is the perfect time to start being kinder and expressing more kindness.
Have some of these themes here resonated with you? Then have a read of these pages:
1. Do you need help or support to stop comparing yourself or in another particular area of your life?
Coaching with Adam Eason Or Hypnotherapy with Adam Eason
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Adam Eason’s Anglo European training college.
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Likewise, if you’d like to learn more about self-hypnosis, understand the evidence based principles of it from a scientific perspective and learn how to apply it to many areas of your life while having fun and in a safe environment and have the opportunity to test everything you learn, then come and join me for my one day seminar which does all that and more, have a read here: The Science of Self-Hypnosis Seminar. Alternatively, go grab a copy of my Science of self-hypnosis book, it’ll help you stop running away!