These days, kindness feels like a commodity in short supply. This is a shame, as just a little human kindness can go a long way toward improving everyone’s community. Besides, being kind to others has countless benefits, both for the giver and the receiver.
Cultivating Kindness Connects Us All
Have you noticed how the happiest people have an uncanny ability to make others happy? These folks light up a room as founts of friendliness, generosity, and all the qualities associated with being nice. Believe it or not, acting this way feels as good for them as to the people touched by their presence. This behavior goes back to early evolution, when our ancient ancestors realized that propping each other up strengthens society’s collective chance of survival. Even today, however we define it, a pleasant personality is one of our most prized traits when choosing friends and relationship partners.
Kindness, The Key to Self-Improvement
Kindness is the ultimate universal value, featured prominently in the ethics of philosophers from Confucius to Aristotle and Nietzsche. For the faithful, compassion is a central tenet of world religions from Christianity to Buddhism to New Age spirituality. Putting compassion into practice is a firm foundation for a moral code and a wonderful way of living one’s faith.
How Kindness Helps Others
While pure kindness is performed for no personal gain, the bonds forged from altruistic acts can have untold worth. Solving a minor problem for a passerby not only benefits both parties, but may have added secondary effects on observers. Public displays of positive behavior promote group harmony and temper social tensions. On our worst days, a stranger’s kindness offers a ray of hope and, sometimes, might even save lives. Maybe most importantly, the good feelings generated by good deeds may prompt others to pay it forward.
At a time when compassion is at a premium, practicing kindness any way you can is how you make the world a better place. With continued action, being kind becomes a reflex which produces an endless loop of positivity.