The power behind random acts of kindness.

 
 
 No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. —Aesop

Do you watch or read the news on a regular basis? Stories about inequality, school shootings, political divide, the list goes on. The negativity got me thinking, "What can I do to bring a little happiness into the world, even if it's only to make someone smile? I'm just one person. I can't really make a difference, can I?" After looking for some answers, I found that the answer is yes! 

The unexpected power of a single act of kindness.

A single act of kindness can end up positively impacting a number of people's moods, health and overall well-being, not just the receiver. It doesn't have to be a grand gesture, either. Something as simple as a compliment counts. And research has shown that someone is much more likely to be kind to others if someone has just been kind to them. In other words, it's contagious. The "pay it forward" thing is real, people!

Did you know that being kind can help you live longer?

According to RandomActsOfKindness.org:

Kindness decreases:
• pain
• stress
• anxiety
• depression
• blood pressure

Kindness increases:
• the love hormone
• energy
• happiness
• lifespan
• pleasure
• serotonin

Imagine if we took just 10 minutes out of our day to see those around us (and not just what's happening on our phones). What a difference we could make! The power to make someone's day is in each of us, and we reap benefits too. It's a win-win.
 

Stuck on ideas?

Here are five super easy random acts of kindness to get you started:

 give a compliment, random act of kindness
 buy someone coffee, pay it forward, random act of kindness
 bring elderly neighbor cookies, random act of kindness
 overwhelmed friend, walk their dog, random act of kindness
 say I love you, random act of kindness

 

Extra credit...

 volunteer at school, mentor, read to kids, act of kindness

As the Random Acts of Kindness website states, "Kindness starts with one." I challenge you to perform one random act of kindness a day and be the "one" who inspires someone else.

Below are a few resources I found full of ideas and uplifting stories. You'll find more health benefits, ideas, and how to "teach" kids (yes, being kind can be learned) the importance of being kind:

What random acts of kindness come to your mind? Comment below. Or share a random act of kindness that made YOUR day and tell us why. Everything counts here. The more we give of ourselves, the better our communities become.

Remember, "No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted."

Let's make the world a happier place, one smile at a time.
--Ann