Human connection satisfies a fundamental need to belong and is established by recognizing and valuing each other. Kindness fosters connection by creating a sense of acceptance and reduces feelings of isolation. A moment spent sending wishes of friendliness, concern, or support nurtures connection and builds an individual’s capacity for kindness. You can maintain social ties and strengthen them as we help each other.
Practicing kindness towards self
…or others promotes happiness and confidence while simultaneously building character. Improving someone’s day through an unexpected kind gesture enhances both the giver and receiver’s mood. It also has unintended physiological benefits such as boosting the immune system, reducing blood pressure, and lowering stress and anxiety. Kindness does not have to be grand or expensive, as the smallest gestures often have the greatest impact. For example, a moment of support during a time of need, words of encouragement, or a simple smile can make a world of difference.
Perspective is often limited by experiences
As a result, people don’t always see eye-to-eye. Extending simple gestures of kindness bridges this gap, allowing connections to form. Recognizing that someone may be having a bad day provides a sense of empathy and makes a moment of kindness more meaningful. View others in a positive light to make it easier to be kind.
Kindness is both a mindset and a habit. It will take effort to actively cultivate this behavior but once it is adopted, opportunities to apply it will appear everywhere. You can acquire a habit of kindness through diligent daily practice as each small act will add up to a lot of good.
It is common to experience obstacles to kindness
Feelings such as fear, distraction, anticipation, or exhaustion. Fear exposes itself in multiple ways; fear of drawing attention or causing embarrassment, fear of having an act of kindness rejected or fear of doing something wrong. Attempt to overcome those feelings by knowing that being kind is never wrong. Wandering thoughts and countless forces demanding attention can lead to distraction. Many miss the opportunity to serve as they rush to complete their next to-do item. Focus on living in the present to avoid these kindness obstacles. Insufficient sleep or inadequate mental rest often leaves people running on their last reserves. Prevent the obstacle of exhaustion by making time for self-care and relaxation.
Reconnect by creating a habit of kindness. Improve connections with self and others by practicing some of these activities:
Whatever the act itself, we suggest it be underpinned by four principles:
- Awareness – We must be aware of the opportunity to be kind. We can’t recognize the need if we are completely absorbed in our thoughts, our own world, or our online alter egos.
- Non-judgment – We must prepare to suspend judgment if we want to be truly kind. It’s not for us to judge the good or bad, right or wrong of another person’s situation. It’s only for us to recognise there is an opportunity for us to be kind.
- Action – We must act in a friendly, generous and considerate manner to the person in front of us. Awareness without action can’t be kind.
- Unconditional – Being kind means offering kindness without conditions or expectation of reward. The real reward for a kindness is in the inner positivity, rather than any external reward or recognition.
When we practice kindness either to other people or towards ourselves we can experience positive mental and physical changes through lowering stress levels and increasing the body’s production of feel-good hormones such as dopamine, oxytocin and serotonin. Being kind helps boost the immune system, reduce blood pressure and reduce stress and anxiety.
The great thing is that it isn’t difficult to be kind.