Personal Benefits of Kindness
The benefits from kindness are more than just feeling good. Kindness affects both our emotional and physical body in different ways. Here are some of the benefits of being and showing kindness to others.
- Kindness slows down the aging process. People who volunteer tend to experience less aches and pains than others. Kindness and helping others will protect your health in the same way aspirin helps against heart disease.
- It improves our relationships and connections with others. Kindness helps us relate to other people and have more positive relationships with everyone we encounter.
- Kindness increases happiness. In a study by The Journal of Social Psychology, who practiced an act of kindness or tried something new each day enjoyed a higher level of happiness than those who didn’t make any changes.
- The release of feel-good hormones happens from acts of kindness. Doing nice things for others can increase your serotonin levels. These are the neurotransmitters responsible for our feelings of satisfaction and well-being. Kindness also releases the endorphins known as the “helper’s high”.
- Kindness improves our own self-respect and self-love. It makes us happier and in a better mood more often by doing kind acts often. Buy someone coffee or lunch, help someone in need or volunteer your time to get the pick-me-up you need.
- Kindness helps prevent illnesses caused from inflammation. These health problems include diabetes, cancer, chronic pain, obesity and migraines. Volunteering seems to lower the levels of inflammation. Oxytocin is released, even from small acts of kindness, which in turn reduces inflammation. Share a smile, make a donation, help others in some small to feel the effects of kindness.
- Kindness eases your anxiety, whether it’s mild nervousness or you’re having severe panic. Being nice to others is one of the easiest and most inexpensive ways to fight of anxiety. Look for ways to help others when you are feeling anxious. Smile at someone, call a friend or lend your time to an organization.
- It is good for your heart. Kindness not only makes your heart feel good; it also affects the actual chemical balance of your heart. It releases the hormone oxytocin which reduces blood pressure thereby protecting the heart.
- Kindness helps reduce stress. Helping others lets you move away from your own worries and problems.
For those of us with fibromyalgia, taking on extra responsibilities may be daunting or impossible. If that is the case, begin at home. Begin where you are. How can you offer simple acts of kindness in your everyday life? A smile, a kind word, a compliment. Holding back on an unkind word.
Remember yourself among those you are kind to. Compliment yourself. Remind yourself of the things that you are strong in. Counter an inner criticism with a compliment. Stop a moment to take a breath or gaze at a flower.
Incorporate the smallest acts of kindness every day. You’ll notice changes in how it affects your life and begin to see the ripple effects on other people as well.