“No act of kindness – however small – is ever wasted”
One thing that this increasingly competitive and fast-paced age requires the most, is kindness.
But how exactly do we be kind to others? Is it possible to be kind every day? Many may wonder. Do we compromise our ambitions for a friend? Do we leave all our tasks and sit all day long catering to someone’s needs? Do we shower others with gifts and presents? Well, one doesn’t really have to move mountains to be kind. This World Kindness Day, we tell you why you should be kind to others and simple ways in which you can make this world a kind place!
What is it like being Kind?
Simply put, being kind is nothing but reaching out to others for their good through your words or actions. And while doing so, it is important for you to be selfless and impose no conditions for your act of kindness.
While Curry, et al. (2018) define kindness as actions intended to benefit others, Passmore and Oades (2015) state that it is a selfless act performed by a person wishing to either help or positively affect the emotional state, that is the mood of another person (Caldwell, 2017).
How to be Kind?
Yes, you can be kind to others practically every single day of your life. And yes, it is simple!
- Let the Smile on your face be wide – It is very valuable!
- Be there for others – Sometimes just being next to somebody can make that person’s day. This could be your neighbor or friend or colleague or anybody at large.
- Lend your Ears – That can be the greatest gift to someone.
- Extend a helping hand to those in need.
- Thank those who are being there for you – your parents, partner, siblings, drivers, cabbie, friends. We sincerely hope this list is longer for you.
- Express how grateful you are to have certain people in your life.
- Carefully check on those in need – this could be a sobbing individual at the bus stop or someone looking awry and stressful at college or workplace.
- Have your arms open for an embrace – an appropriate hug can be therapeutic.
- Accept others’ limitations and strengths – All of us have both. By not judging others, you are being nothing but kinder.
- Make your contribution for a genuine cause – volunteer or donate, maybe. This is another way of being there for others or doing something good for society.
Why should you be Kind?
Volumes of scientific research suggest that being kind is linked to several benefits for not only others but also for self.
- A surge of experimental work has provided a piece of strong evidence that being kind boosts wellbeing (Rowland and Curry, 2018).
- Shimai and Tanaka-Matsumi (2006) reported a close association between kindness and happiness in everyday life. One of their two studies indicated that kind people experience more happiness and have happy memories.
- Popularity is another benefit that Layous, et al. (2012) demonstrated in a long-term study. The giver of kindness, they found out, not only experiences improved well-being, but also popularity.
- Kindness is also known to reduce stress and release positivity, according to Sreenivasan and Weinberger (2017).
- Erdinger (2019) adds enhanced emotional and psychological well-being, due to decreasing symptoms of depression or anxiety and increasing positive emotions. Acts of kindness also have an impact on the quality of relationships.
Do not forget to be kind on yourself
A great deed such as kindness better begin from self. While being kind towards others, here is how you can be kind on yourself:
- Be easy on yourself.
- Accept the various emotions that you experience – happiness, sadness, anger, etc., as they come.
- Remember that you are not perfect, but just a human being like others. So, accept your strengths and weaknesses.
- Do not go hard on yourself for mistakes and failures. It is okay for them to happen.
- Allow yourself a moment in times of defeat.
- Engage in activities that you like and enjoy.
- Express gratitude for the good things in life.
- Praise yourself for the good things you do for yourself and others.
- Reward yourself for tiny accomplishments. Do not underestimate them.
- Respect yourself for what you are and the way you are.
- Respect your body for how it is. Accept it with kindness.
Kindness must begin from self, but should not end there. So, be kind to yourself, be kind to others around you. Inspire others with your kindness. Contribute to making this world a kind place.