The word “kind” is one of the oldest in the English language, and in its original Germanic roots meant ‘nature’, ‘innate character’ and ‘family’(kin). To be kind is your nature. To be kind is to treat people as family. We are called humankind for a reason. ‘Kind’ is often confused with ‘nice’, but the difference is night and day. The word ‘nice’ has to do with conformity to a social standard – being ‘pleasant’ or ‘agreeable’, and can be insincere. In fact, the word “nice”, in its original roots meant ‘weak’, ‘timid’, and literally ‘not-knowing’ (Latin ‘nescius’: ne- ‘not’ + stem of scire ‘to know’). Being kind, on the other hand, is inherently authentic and involves empathy and compassion. You don’t have to be nice. Just be human. Be kind!
There’s substantial scientific evidence that being kind makes you – and others around you – happy. Dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, and endogenous opioids are released by kind behavior, creating a ‘helpers high’. Oxytocin, often referred to as the ‘love hormone’, aids in lowering blood pressure and improving overall heart-health. Studies have also shown that developing a habit of kindness reduces cortisol by 23%, and also reduces pain, stress, anxiety, and depression. In another study, students who completed random acts of kindness for six weeks reported a 41%+ increase in happiness!
Reduce Stress, Anxiety & Depression
Improve Mental & Physical Health
Lower Blood Pressure
Reduce Aches & Pains
Feel good i.e. “Helpers’ High”
A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees.
– Amelia Earhart