Did you know that being kind to someone—whether it’s as simple as offering a compliment or holding a door open—has scientifically-proven benefits?
Increased happiness, energy and even lifespan are known effects of doing and, in some cases, simply experiencing random acts of kindness.
A study from the University of the South found that performing random acts of kindness helped to boost psychological health by activating the release of dopamine, the feel-good neurotransmitter in the brain. Being kind is also known to decrease pain, stress, anxiety and blood pressure, according to the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation, a nonprofit with the simple goal of making kindness the norm. In one study in the UK, they found that by performing random acts of kindness (RAK), it increased individuals happiness in a s little as three days!
Because we spend so much of our lives at work, being kind in the workplace is just as important as being kind outside of it. Workplace stress, which can be fueled by unfriendly environments, is a leading cause of job turnover and low productivity, according to the American Institute of Stress. Research has shown that positive workplace culture fosters higher morale and improved teamwork, ultimately leading to increased productivity and employee retention.
Research has also revealed that the benefits from performing random acts of kindness can come from doing for others and for the planet, giving you even more opportunities to feel the positive effects.
Why not make it a goal to incorporate more kindness into your life?
Here are 9 ideas to get you started:
1) Pick up litter in your community
2) Pay for someone else’s coffee or meal at a restaurant
3) Shovel a neighbor’s driveway
4) Bring in a treat for your coworkers
5) Make a tasty, healthy meal for a family member
6) Volunteer at a homeless shelter
7) Spread positive messages online
8) Use a travel mug for your morning beverage instead of a disposable one
9) And my personal favorite, be an agent of positivity!
Want more ideas? Check out the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation.
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