Connie Jordan on The Surprising Health Benefits of Random Acts of Kindness
Most people like to think they’re kindhearted people, and they are. But life has become overwhelmingly busy, and people tend to move through their day on autopilot, buzzing from task to task, from home to work to after-school activities to home again, only to drop into bed exhausted and depleted.
While you likely show plenty of kindness to those you share a home and office with, there’s a good chance encounter dozens of people throughout your day. It’s so easy not to see people, just as it is to be distracted and oblivious to others, which creates a disconnect. You may complete transactions, brush past people on the sidewalk, speak to strangers on the phone, or share an elevator with people. Each of these interactions is an opportunity to spread kindness.
Have You Committed A Random Act of Kindness Lately?
By consciously taking time out of your day to show some extra kindness, you are taking time to be more present and aware in your life.
People who make a habit of random acts of kindness often choose strangers to receive their kindness. This helps ensure that you are genuinely doing it free from expectation. This is key because kindness isn’t really kindness if you are expecting something in return.
But here’s the thing: when you are kind without an agenda, you still reap benefits. These benefits include not just a warm fuzzy feeling, but actual health benefits.
It’s not surprising. Humans by nature are kind. It’s wired into the human brain and is a part of our survival skill set.
However, when people move through their day on autopilot and do not connect with each other, there are serious consequences, as evidenced by society’s increasing issues with depression, anxiety, isolation and substance abuse.
You might be surprised to learn that kindness lowers blood pressure and strengthens the immune system. It also releases the hormone oxytocin. This is a bonding hormone that has a positive impact on physical health and is considered cardioprotective. Kindness is good for your heart.
If you struggle with anxiety, you’ll find that committing random acts of kindness will help reduce your symptoms and make you feel happier and more satisfied with your life. Not only that, but your kindness ripples outward, positively impacting you, your network and your community.
How Can You Offer Your Kindness?
It doesn’t have to be a big thing. In fact, it’s often the littlest things that make a significant impact. Making eye contact and smiling at strangers is simple but is still an act of kindness. Helping someone with their bags or paying for someone’s coffee can completely change someone’s day for the better. The act of offering your time as a volunteer or purchasing a meal for someone who is hungry makes a difference in your community. Leaving positive comments, making anonymous donations, cleaning up someone’s yard or taking out their garbage cans are all good examples. Anything that is kind, helpful and positive makes a difference — not just for them, but for you, too.
About the author, Connie Jordan: Connie Jordan is a leader in education and motivation. Her vast experience has seen her as a teacher, administrator, charter school developer and education consultant. Connie Jordan is the Founder and CEO of Anchor Adversity, LLC, where she uses her knowledge to guide individuals to achieve their passions to the fullest.