November 13th was World Kindness Day. Did you know that practicing kindess is actually good for your health?? Dr. Kelli Harding did research and found that kindness--both giving and receiving kindness-- can improve patient’s lives.
Here are her tips for practicing and implementing Kindness into your daily life:
- Little acts of kindness can make a big difference- There are hundreds of opportunities to practice kindness every day, just think small. Look your barista in the eye and ask her how her day’s going or let another car go in front of you during your commute. Harding says it not only boosts your mood, it has a positive ripple effect on your biology, too.
- Be kind to yourself- Start with the way you treat yourself and stop negative self-talk for good.
- Reach out to others- Know someone who’s lonely or going through a tough time? Reach out and offer your companionship, they won’t always accept the invitation, so keep trying to connect with people and someone will.
- Get to know your co-workers- Make it a goal to learn something personal about the people you work with every day. Think of the show “Ted Lasso” and how the main character’s kindness has a positive influence on those around him.
- Be generous with hugs- “I’m definitely giving my kids much longer hugs,” Harding says after researching the power of loving touch. She advises treating relationships the same way you treat diet and exercise - as something critical to your health.
- Think about someone who’s shown you kindness- And then send them a note or meet them for coffee to acknowledge how much their kindness means to you and it’ll make you both feel good.
- Don’t make assumptions if someone’s being unkind- You never know what someone else is going through, there may be something triggering their unkind behavior. Remember the saying “Hurt people hurt people” then proceed with kindness, even when someone else isn’t returning it to you.