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How being kind to others helps you

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We all know the Golden Rule: “Treat others the way you want to be treated yourself.” From childhood, we are told that kindness is an important part of life. Being kind to others helps make them feel good and helps make the world a better place. But did you know that being kind can also help your own mental health?

As much as we do kind acts to make others feel good, being kind makes us feel just as good. While we should approach performing kind acts as a way to be good to others and not just to ourselves, it is helpful to know this truth. When you are having a hard time with depression or any other mental health issue, being kind may be just the thing to turn it around.

Being kind triggers the reward system in your brain, releasing chemicals that produce positive feelings. These chemicals amplify good moods and can change bad moods to good. They can even go beyond making you feel better mentally and ease physical pain you are experiencing. These reactions make you more likely to continue performing these acts of kindness, improving your self-worth and further strengthening your overall mental health.

Performing acts of kindness also strengthens bonds between you and others. Being kind to someone makes them more prone to be kind in return, further strengthening your relationship and building a stronger support system for both parties. Beyond the relationship, your act of kindness may inspire them to perform kind acts for others, continually spreading the love and positive feelings.

Random acts of kindness

So if performing acts of kindness can strengthen your mental health, what can you do? Here are some tips for random acts of kindness you can perform during our COVID-19 era.

  • Send a handwritten letter to a friend to know you are thinking about them
  • Schedule a phone or video call with someone to catch up and see how they are doing
  • Surprise someone by sending a gift or treat in the mail
  • Offer to drop off a meal at the house of a friend who is isolating for safety
  • Find an important cause that is safe to offer up your time to
  • Clean up someone else’s mess in your household
  • Give a random compliment to a loved one
  • Lend a listening ear to someone in need
  • Offer to pick up groceries for a neighbor
  • Take the burden of a task off of a coworker
  • Take interest in someone else’s hobbies
  • Leave a positive review or good tip, even when a worker doesn’t do the best job

We hope these tips inspire you to be extra kind to someone today. If the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic or other challenges in life have you experiencing increased mental health issues, call Centerstone at 1-877-HOPE123 (877-467-3123) or visit centerstoneconnect.org.


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