Why Kindness Matters
There is nothing as rewarding as giving back to others. Kindness is the best medicine, and being generous can change the world.
“One act of kindness towards one human being changes the world. Because to change the world all we have to do is change one life,” says host of the Netflix series The Kindness Diaries, author, and kindness expert Leon Logothetis. In his adventures, Logothetis has discovered that generosity matters, and that by being kind you can go anywhere.
Kindness matters because it makes you happy
When was the last time you did something kind for a stranger? It probably felt good to make someone else smile. A simple act of kindness can turn a bad day into a good day. Not just for the receiver, but also the giver. Researchers at the University of British Columbia found that completing being generous leads to a significant increase in positive moods. Happiness is spread through each and every one of us. By taking the time to help others, we not only give them a better day, but their satisfaction and gratitude can make ours better as well. We connect with people through kindness. “This river of kindness flows through each and every one of us, connecting us together” Logothetis says in his book, Why Kindness Matters. Being kind is the first step to real human connection.
Kindness matters because it’s good for your health
Worry, fear and stress all contribute to aging. Being kind deaccelerates this process. Bruce Cryer, former CEO of HeartMath and co-founder of What Makes Your Heart Sing, says that “A simple act of kindness can dissolve the worry so instead of aging needlessly we can feel the forward momentum of hope come alive.” Spreading kindness decreases anxiety in social situations. When we are kind towards others our bond with them grows.
Scientifically, when we are kind a hormone called oxytocin is released in our bodies. Oxytocin triggers a release of nitric oxide. This chemical dilutes our blood cells and shrinks inflammation in the cardiovascular system which reduces blood pressure and the chances of heart disease.
Kindness matters because it’s contagious
It’s been proven that kindness has a domino effect. When one person stops to do something kind for another, those who witnessed the act are inspired to do the same. In 2014, an act of kindness by a single woman in a Starbucks drive-thru sparked a 378 person long chain of paying-it forward. Logothetis tells Operation Warm, “If you care about someone, they will feel it, and if they feel it, they will pass it on.” Acts can be as small as smiling at a stranger, paying for someone’s coffee or even donating to a good cause. It’s these moments that spark a chain reaction of compassion in people. Kindness is an easy habit to pick up, but an even harder one to let go of.
Kindness matters because it sparks hope
Giving back to those in need not only makes them feel better, but it can also give them hope. Logothetis says “The greatest thing we can do for another human being is make them feel less alone, and what better way to do that by simply being kind…” One small act of compassion can make a huge impact on someone’s life. In his book, Logothetis opens up about how he had little hope in himself and the world before his journey. It was the kindness of others that reinstilled his faith. If Logothetis could bring hope to entire communities, imagine how much hope you can bring to one child. It only takes one person to trigger an entire movement. Showing kindness to others is the first step to creating happier, healthier, and more hopeful people.