Have you ever noticed that when you do something nice for someone else, it makes you feel good too? Both practicing and witnessing acts of kindness can make you healthier. Below are some benefits to showing empathy and kindness to yourself and others.
Kindness makes us happier
When you’re helping someone, you’re not only bettering their lives but you may also be improving your own. Doing nice things for others causes your brain to release endorphins, the chemicals that give us feelings of excitement and high spirits. It also boosts your serotonin, a natural antidepressant in the brain.
Kindness protects our hearts
Being kind creates what has been called “emotional warmth”. Emotional warmth releases a hormone known as oxytocin which is known to promote feelings of love, bonding and well-being.
Kindness helps us live longer
Volunteering and caring for others may help increase your life expectancy. Science has shown that grandparents who watch their grandchildren added an average of 5 years to their lives. Research shows that those who care for others and/or volunteer, reap health benefits that may help combat the negative effects of emotions like stress which can help you live longer. How cool is that?!
Kindness can help us be more successful
Showing kindness and empathy to others not only can help you build resilience, but it is also a consistent characteristic of successful people. When you work in a positive work culture you are more likely to be engaged, innovative, and perform at your best. When you think positively and send good vibes to others, things are more likely to work in your favor.
Kindness is contagious
Somebody is always watching us, and we are so much more influential than we realize. When we see someone help another person it makes us feel good, which in turn causes us to “pay it forward”. Kindness and compassion help us relate to others and can give us more positive relationships with family, friends, and even perfect strangers we encounter in our lives.
Do we really need a reason to be kind? Kindness is something we can all can take part in, anytime and anywhere. Everyone is fighting their own battles, even if they appear to have the perfect life or constantly wear a smile on their face. Try showing more empathy and compassion for others; the world could use some extra kindness right now!