The Benefits of Kindness

Feb 17, 2019Blog

The Benefits of Kindness

Today is apparently “Random Acts of Kindness Day”.  There seems to be an awareness day for everything, but this one may act as a good reminder as to why being kind benefits everyone!

There has actually been a fair amount of scientific research done on kindness, and it makes for interesting reading.  People who undertake acts of kindness are generally found to be happier and have higher feelings of self-worth.  In addition, scientists at the University of Sussex have recently published research which suggests that kindness activates the rewards centres of the brain whether or not the person perceives they will get anything in return – the very act of kindness makes us feel satisfied even if it’s entirely altruistic.

Whilst it may not surprise you to hear that people who are kinder are also happier overall, being kind can actually have some tangible physiological effects on your body.  One study measured the levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, and found that levels were on average 23% lower in people undertaking acts of kindness, than those that weren’t.  They were also found to have lower blood pressure.  Another study found that kindness also impacted improved heart rate variability, an indicator of cardio vascular health.

So here are some ideas of small things you can do:

  • Tell someone what you value about them
  • Offer to buy someone a coffee
  • Send someone a text to tell them that you’re thinking about them
  • Sign up to support a fundraising challenge or sponsor a friend
  • Write a nice review for a small business you’ve used
  • Comment positively on a blog or social media post
  • Donate something to a charity shop