On the heels of Random Acts of Kindness Day (February 17), and as this month dedicated to love comes to a close, let’s talk about how to keep the kindness flowing throughout the year. If you need a reason to be kind, consider the following. Kindness benefits both the giver and the receiver. When we are kind to others, we tend to feel a sense of personal satisfaction and inner peace. In return, the recipient of our kindness may experience joy and gratitude.
We don’t need a special occasion to be kind, as we can extend kindness on a regular basis. These are six ways that we can be kind every day:
- Focus on kindness. When you wake up, think about ways to be kind to those who you may encounter that day. Look for opportunities to do some good in the world, because they are everywhere, if only we seek them out. Call your grandmother to let her know you’re thinking about her. Help your neighbor carry in their groceries. Refrain from arguing with your spouse/partner. Whether they be big or small acts of kindness, they matter.
- Avoid gossip. Refusing to participate whenever someone tries to engage you in their negative talk is a true act of kindness. Do not listen to, or engage in, gossip of any kind. Words matter, so, make sure that your words are kind when speaking of others, and don’t tolerate other people sharing gossip with you.
- Give people recognition and validation. Most people want to be seen, heard, and valued. So, compliment and praise others whenever you can. You’d be surprised at what a difference this can make in someone’s day, when you share positive feedback or a kind word with them.
- Reach out to people who may be struggling. If someone is experiencing a particular life challenge, ask yourself, If I were in their position, how would I want others to support me? Also, ask them directly what it is that they really need at this time. Then, do your best to support them in the way that they have requested.
- Use technology to be kind. Texting and e-mailing are quick and easy, and both can be used to send a kind message to someone. Write positive comments on social media posts, leave a loving voice mail message, or record a video letting someone know how much they mean to you. These acts of kindness take only a few minutes, but they can have a long-term positive effect.
- Think of yourself as a conduit of kindness. When we believe that we can greatly impact others through simple acts of kindness, we’ll be even more motivated to act kindly. As we consistently remind ourselves to be good to others, practicing kindness will become second nature and inspire others to do the same.
If you are in need of even more inspiration to be kind, join me for the next Elev8 Your Life with Kristi podcast episode, What if Everyone Were Kind, that will be out this Tuesday, February 28. In this episode, I talk about how a special gentleman shared with me his thoughts on kindness that touched my heart and motivated me to be a better, kinder person.
Every day offers each one of us the chance to be kind to ourselves, to others, and to the planet in countless ways. So, what will you do today to spread some kindness?
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