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In a World Where You Can Be Anything, Be Kind

By Nicole Smith

Kindness… A gift everyone can afford, yet one we often find most challenging to give. National Random Acts of Kindness Day is a day to try and change that.

Recognized every year on February 17th, the holiday was created in Denver, CO, in 1995 as a way to celebrate kindness… To pay it forward.

We all have days when we’ve just about lost all faith in humanity. With so much hate in the world, it’s sometimes hard to believe that most people actually are good-natured folks.

It’s when the little things happen, the ones that we don’t expect, that we begin to see a glimmer of hope. The person in front of you at the drive-thru pays for your order, a co-worker brings you coffee, or the person in front of you at the grocery store, with a buggy full of groceries, lets you ahead of them since you only have a couple of items.

Aside from the obvious, brightening someone’s day and helping to make the world a better place, there are several other benefits to being altruistic. When we show generosity to others, our bodies release various hormones such as serotonin, oxytocin, and endorphins that can improve our health and overall wellbeing. For example, oxytocin helps lower blood pressure and increases feelings of optimism. Serotonin is the key hormone that stabilizes our mood, feelings of wellbeing, and happiness. It even has a healing effect! Simple acts of random kindness can reduce pain, anxiety, and stress while increasing our energy, lifespan, and happiness. Pretty fantastic benefits for something that also benefits others!!

Kindness is contagious. When we’re kind to one person, that person feels inclined to be kind to another, and so on. If we all treated each other with decency and compassion, imagine what kind of world we’d be living in! What kind of world we’d be leaving for our children and grandchildren!

Today, I ask that you all do one small thing, just one, to brighten another person’s day. It could be something as simple as holding a door or just giving a smile. You never know the profound impact something so small may have on someone’s day.

“A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees.” – Amelia Earhart

For some more ideas on what you can do to celebrate National Random Acts of Kindness Day, visit https://www.randomactsofkindness.org/.

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