One way to make space for kindness is to let someone cut in front of you at the grocery store, the bank, or even on the road. If you see someone lost, offer directions. If you see someone needing help with their car, an errand, a chore, practice kindness by helping out. There will be someone you cross paths with today who can use a bit of kindness. Give up your seat, give your time, donate, use any of the prompts from the last 24 days to offer support.
‘Tis the season of giving. Ironically, altruism benefits us in massive ways. Giving makes us happy, whether we are giving our time, money, or acts of kindness. Generosity releases oxytocin, which triggers feelings of pleasure, connection and trust. It also promotes cooperation and social connection. Furthermore, giving is good for our health! Helping others can decrease stress and lower blood pressure. Volunteering or offering emotional support has even been linked to longevity; studies show that people who give of themselves receive a physiological benefit.
When we slow down, when we are not in a rush to get anywhere or do anything, we have the space – both mentally and physically – to practice kindness. Where can you share your time? Where can you make a difference?
Kindness is a muscle we must strengthen over time. Plus, sharing acts of kindness creates a ripple effect. Reading others’ acts of kindness releases oxytocin and serotonin, and also inspires others to share too.