Updated: Apr 15
Imagine having a better day than Ice Cube. You woke up happy, you put on your favorite outfit, it’s a beautiful day, and everything is going smoothly. You decide to treat yourself to a new pair of sneakers, and you go to the mall. You go to the sneaker store, choose the pair you want to try on, and you walk up to an employee to ask for help, and the employee is just as rude and ignorant as a McDonald’s employee when you ask for extra Sweet and Sour sauce. Now, this employee probably just ruined your entire mood all because they weren’t kind.
For the most part, just like being kind, being rude can be contagious. You’re likely to be offensive back, and this could spiral into a more significant issue, or you could take the irritation from the employee and take it out on someone else. Now, there will be a domino effect of people being unkind to each other. Instead of starting a consecutive mean streak, look to being nice to someone for no reason.
Being kind is the act of being friendly, generous, affectionate, and more. When I think of a kind person, my grandmother appears vividly in front of me. A sweet voice, with soft hands, and always willing to help. In a world where it is as one-hundred and forty characters and a retweet to be mean, being kind is just as easy, the act of being kind provides health benefits, and you get to make people’s day.
Good and Kind is a platform that promotes acts of kindness. They talk about the positive effects of kinds, provide acts of kindness for you to participate in, and share random acts of kindness from people. On their website, they share multiple benefits of the importance of being kind.
Being Kind Reduces Stress
Instead of stressing yourself out more from being stressed, do something kind. Performing small gestures like opening the door for someone, helping someone carry heavy groceries, or even paying it forward can improve your mental health. Emily Ansell, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, did a study on how one’s levels of stress can decrease when they perform acts of kindness. “Stressful days usually lead us to have a worse mood and poorer mental health, but our findings suggest that if we do small things for others, such as holding a door open for someone, we won’t feel as poorly on stressful days,” Ansell said. Good and Kind shares that being kind is a natural way to help relieve stress according to Clinical Psychological Science. Being stressed is not uncommon, but try to respond differently. Push yourself to be kind to a stranger.
Being Kind Increases Your Energy Level
With stress comes the feeling of feeling sluggish and a decrease in energy. Just as being kind lowers stress levels, it also increases your power. Scott Mautz explained in his article for INC. that “Kindness produces serotonin which generates that feeling of calmness and even helps heal wounds.” That act of kindness is strong enough to heal and decrease depression. “About half of participants in one study reported that they feel stronger and more energetic after helping others; many also reported feeling calmer and less depressed, with increased feelings of self-worth,” Christine Carter, a sociologist and happiness expert at UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center said. Be kind to others and your health.
Being Kind Is Good For Your Heart
Good and Kind explains that being kind produces emotional warmth throughout your body. They said, “Acts of kindness are often accompanied by emotional warmth. Emotional warmth produces the hormone, oxytocin, in the brain and throughout the body.” Good and Kind also added that “Oxytocin causes the release of a chemical called nitric oxide in blood vessels, which dilates (expands) the blood vessels. This reduces blood pressure, and therefore oxytocin is known as a ‘cardioprotective’ hormone because it protects the heart (by lowering blood pressure). Acts of kindness can produce oxytocin, and therefore kindness can be said to be cardioprotective.”