We are always told to be kind to one another, and it’s a quality that we try to instill in our children from a young age. We know the power of kindness and why it matters. You never know what someone else is going through, and sometimes it’s nice to let someone know you are thinking of them or paying it forward in your community.
But did you know that there is a scientific payoff to kindness beyond moral and ethical reasons? These acts of helping others extend far beyond the moment and create a real, human impact on each individual. So let’s get into it!
Kindness has been studied within the scientific community, with results proving that kindness offers good in more ways than one.
First, it boosts happiness and happy chemicals in your body!
A study reported on how people felt after performing or observing kind acts every day for seven days. Participants were randomly assigned to carry out at least one more kind act than usual for someone close to them, an acquaintance or stranger, or themselves, or to try to actively observe kind acts. Happiness was measured before and after the seven days of kindness. The researchers found that being kind to ourselves, others or actively observing kindness around us boosted happiness.
The New York Times reported that witnessing acts of kindness produces oxytocin, occasionally referred to as the love hormone, which aids in lowering blood pressure and improving our overall heart health. Oxytocin also increases our self-esteem and optimism, which is extra helpful when we’re anxious or shy in a social situation.
Psychology Today expands on this, noting that, like most medical antidepressants, kindness stimulates the production of serotonin. This feel-good chemical heals your wounds, calms you down, and makes you happy!
Another impact discovered is overall energy and quality of life.
The Greater Good Science Center explains, “about half of participants in one study reported that they feel stronger and more energetic after helping others; many also reported feeling calmer and less depressed, with increased feelings of self-worth.”
Author Christine Carter discusses more fully kindness through a volunteering lens and how people who give back to their community see a payoff in their health. Writing, “people who volunteer tend to experience fewer aches and pains. Giving help to others protects overall health twice as much as aspirin protects against heart disease. People 55 and older who volunteer for two or more organizations have an impressive 44% lower likelihood of dying early, and that’s after sifting out every other contributing factor, including physical health, exercise, gender, habits like smoking, marital status, and many more. This is a stronger effect than exercising four times a week or going to church.”
How to Reap the Benefits:
Knowing the additional benefits that kindness can offer you, why wouldn’t you partake?! There’s a variety of ways to incorporate kindness into your life, and through a little intention and mindfulness, you can quickly turn it into a habit.
When people witness acts of kindness or are recipients, they are more likely to go out and do good acts of their own. So we encourage you all to be the change you want to see and lead through example!
Here are some of our favorite ways to extend kindness:
- Volunteering at a local nonprofit
- Volunteering for your local hospital or school district
- Making a charitable donation
- Asking for donations instead of gifts
- Supporting businesses that give back
- Sending “thinking of you” gifts to loved ones
- Helping a stranger
- Sharing compliments and kind wishes to others
- Paying for the person behind you
- Repping apparel and products that promote positivity and kindness
Our Mission and Values:
At The Kindness Cause, we are built on the foundation of kindness and all it has to offer. Selling products that give back to our partnered non-profits doing good in the world means so much to us and hopefully to you. Here are the additional values and pillars we live by. We hope you’ll get in on the fun and check out our products that give back! Whether you are shopping for yourself, or your kiddos, or want a kind gift, we’ve got you covered.