You don’t have to donate large sums of money or be the CEO of some major corporation to create change and have an impact in the world. Small genuine acts of kindness can greatly impact yourself, others, and the world around you.
The world could use a little more kindness. Being considerate and kind to the people around you can foster a sense of compassion, community, and overall well-being. These are seven small acts of kindness you can start this year!
Say Thank you
When someone does something nice for you it’s okay to say thank you. Researchers studying gratitude have found that being thankful and expressing it to others is good for your health and happiness.
Here are some of the top research-based reasons for practicing gratitude.
- Gratitude brings us happiness: Through research by Robert Emmons, happiness expert Sonja Lyubomirsky, and many other scientists, practicing gratitude has proven to be one of the most reliable methods for increasing happiness and life satisfaction; it also boosts feelings of optimism, joy, pleasure, enthusiasm, and other positive emotions.
- Conversely, gratitude also reduces anxiety and depression and could be a valuable part of therapy. Research suggests it may help reduce depression among people with chronic diseases.
- Gratitude is good for our bodies: Studies by Emmons and his colleague Michael McCullough suggest gratitude strengthens the immune system, lowers blood pressure, reduces symptoms of illness, and makes us less bothered by aches and pains. It also encourages us to exercise more and take better care of our health.
- Grateful people sleep better: They get more hours each night, spend less time awake before falling asleep, and feel refreshed upon awakening. If you want to sleep more soundly, count blessings, not sheep.
- Gratitude makes us more resilient: It has been found to help people recover from traumatic events, including Vietnam War veterans with PTSD, victims of natural disasters, and people living under violent, political conflict.
- Gratitude strengthens relationships: It makes us feel closer and more committed to friends and romantic partners. When partners feel and express gratitude for each other, they each become more satisfied with their relationship. Gratitude may also encourage a more equitable division of labor between partners.
- Gratitude promotes forgiveness—even between ex-spouses after a divorce.
- Gratitude makes us “pay it forward”: Grateful people are more helpful, altruistic, and compassionate—in other words, more prosocial.
- Gratitude is good for kids: Children as young as six or seven are more generous when they’re feeling grateful, and grateful adolescents tend to be more resilient. When 10-19 year olds practice gratitude, they report greater life satisfaction and more positive emotion, and they feel more connected to their community.
- Gratitude is good for schools: Studies suggest it makes students feel better about their school; it also makes teachers feel more satisfied and accomplished, and less emotionally exhausted, possibly reducing teacher burnout.
Reference:The world could use a little more kindness. World Kindness Day is just …. https://www.flyswoop.com/world-kindness-day/
Give someone a genuine compliment
Everyone has the desire to be acknowledged. Recognizing the good in others will boost your mood and might make someone else’s day. The more we build up others, the more we build ourselves.
Knowing how to give compliments is equally as important as knowing how to receive compliments. There is only one way to receive a compliment and that is graciously, with a smile.
Help Someone Who Needs It
Is there someone in your life who needs a little help? Maybe a neighbor, a relative of a friend, or a nursing home resident. Everyone needs a hand sometimes and if you are able to help why not help?
Helping others improves social interaction, distracts people from their own problems, improves self-esteem and competence, make you happier, give you a sense of purpose and meaning, and even lower your blood pressure.
Tell a manager about a good employee
Instead of complaining about a bad job, why don’t we mention good service more? Let a manager know when one of their staff does a great job and you will make their day, without question!
Donate your time
Donating your time can be just as effective as a charitable monetary donation. Not only are you helping people in need, but you are also getting social interaction. You might even learn something new or meet someone interesting.
Places to volunteer
Here are some places where you can become a volunteer in your community:
- Senior or community centers
- Local charity fundraiser
- Animal shelters
- Homeless Shelters
- Personal Causes
Donate your stuff
Environmental sustainability is a popular topic of discussion. One way to help the environment is to reuse items by donating them instead of throwing them away. Consider donating items that could benefit someone else in need.
Pay it forward
Paying it forward can mean different things to different people. Basically, “pay it forward” is when someone does something for you, you pass it on to another person instead of paying that person back directly.
It can be giving someone an opportunity when you are given a chance. Or paying for someone’s groceries while you are at the store.
Finding ways to give in your everyday lives in small ways can improve your outlook on life and help to positively impact others.
Leave a Reply