“I believe that in the end it is kindness and generous accommodation that are the catalysts for real change”_Nelson Mandela
Why is beneficial for us to be kind? As it turns out being kind enhances our own wellbeing and life satisfaction. Everyone is better off living in an altruistic and compassionate world. Dutch sociologist Ruut Veenhoven in his ‘liveability theory’ explained that people are happier in those “livable” societies which support the highest level of human needs to the greatest number of people . Furthermore, scientific evidence suggests that:
- Acting kind towards another person will most likely make them smile, and that smile triggers a smile on your own face too!
- “Feel good” attitudes are often contagious because the mood and feelings of those around us influence our own state of mind. We can therefore uplift the despondent around us through small acts of kindness and in doing so we uplift both them AND ourselves.
- Being kind to others and engaging in altruistic behaviors can help us make or strengthen meaningful connections with others. Donating money to improve the life of a stranger enables you to connect with someone you have never met on the other side of the world; volunteering at different organizations that support causes you care about offers you a chance to connect and to build up your social network with like-minded individuals.
- Most of us want to believe that we are nice and kind people. Acts of kindness give us an opportunity to confirm the belief, and to validate this opinion of ourselves. Indeed, according to the Dalai Lama “it also helps us develop inner happiness and peace”.
- What goes around comes around. Kindness comes back around in both direct and indirect ways. Someone who you helped yesterday may be in the position to help you tomorrow.
“Do good anyway (…) even if nobody is watching”_Yenny
Indeed as Yenny spoke, I felt my soul expanding. I felt my heart quickening. I heard the words of great men and women, great philosophers and psychologists, great scientists and poets echo in every syllable of her credo: “do good anyway (…) even if nobody is watching”, do whatever you can, wherever you are, and with whatever talents you have got.
Thank you, Yenny for these words. I hope they inspire our entire PARCS community!
Please share with me what kindness means to you and how it affects your life! I would love to hear your story!
“What we can do is to live our lives as best as we can with purpose, and love, and joy. We can use each day to show those who are closest to us how much we care about them, and treat others with kindness and respect that we wish for ourselves. We can learn from our mistakes and grow from our failures. And we can strive at all costs to make a better world”_ President Barack Obama
“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle”_Plato