“Kindness is the glue that holds society together. It is the essence of beauty. It brings smiles to faces, lightens our burdens, creates friendships, transforms people and situations.”
David R Hamilton, Ph.D, Author if the Five Side Effects of Kindness.
It’s official… The world is a better place when we all reach out to help each other. You see when we do someone a good turn, we produce serotonin (one of our bodies happy chemicals) which is why we feel good. The more acts of kindness we can offer in a day, without expectation of return, the happier we feel and the lower our stress levels are.
And the best part? There’s no such thing as a small act of kindness – in fact even the smallest gesture can have a powerful ripple effect. Being kind helps others AND helps ourselves, it’s a win win situation!
So what could you do to boost someones happy chemicals for the day? Here’s a few ideas…
Pay someone a compliment
Ever noticed how awesome you feel after someone pays you a compliment? You hold your head a little higher and have an extra little bounce in your step. Why not make someones day and dish out a compliment or two? You might…
- Tell your partner how gorgeous they look today
- Tell your children that they tell the bestest, most funny jokes ever!
- Tell your boss that she inspires you
- Tell your children’s teacher how much you and your children appreciate them
- Tell your mum she looks beautiful today
Do something for nothing
Donating your money to good causes is all well and good (and much appreciated!)But often what people need is your time and skills. Lending a hand in this way often fills a practical need and leaves you with that wonderful feel-good buzz. Why not…
- Offer to get your neighbours shopping
- Offer to pick up a friends children from school
- Give away an hour of your working time – if you’re a therapist you might offer a free treatment or if you’re a consultant a free hour of your time to someone in need.
- Offer to help out at your children’s next school event
Let someone know you are thinking of them
In a world where everyone seems to be connected to everyone else, it can be surprisingly easy to feel alone. Make a mental note to check in with someone special today. You could…
- Give your parents a call to say hello
- Drop your sister or brother an email to let them know you’re thinking of them
- Ping your friend with a WhatsApp just to let them know how awesome they are
Almost everything you consider throwing away could probably be donated to help a good cause or someone in need. So before you chuck it, think about how you could donate it instead. Perhaps you could…
- Give old uniforms and shoes to your local school
- Donate books and toys to your local nursery or pre-school
- Bag up clothes and shoes and pop them in a clothing bank (you can usually find them in the car park of your local supermarket)
- Donate your old phone or tablet to a charity
You might also consider joining the NHS Organ Donation Register, now that’s a big way to change lives!
Be nice (to everyone)
Ok, admittedly it’s tough to be nice to all people all the time, especially if you’re having a difficult day yourself, if someone has been unkind or rude to you, or if it’s deemed socially acceptable to be mean to a certain type of people (step forward parking attendants!) but do try… Consider
- Telling the barista that they make the most amazing mocca, chocca latte in the known world!
- Saying ‘thank you, have a nice day!’ to the person on the supermarket tills
- Being polite and patient to the receptionist (even if they can’t get you an appointment for that day)
- Telling the restaurant waitress that your food was delicious!
- Hold the door open for the person behind you
We hope we’ve given you a few ideas about how to spread a little kindness today. Remember, there is no such thing as a small act of kindness!