When we hear about and witness acts of hatred, inequality and cruelty, you can also experience despair and hopelessness. You may feel there is nothing that you can do to ease the suffering of others or fix these problems and that there is no way forward.
Then we might shut down and do nothing.
Well, this is where simple acts of kindness come in. You may not “save the world” or stop a war, but you CAN send forward a motion to spread kindness, both for others and to yourself. These acts of purposeful kindness can help others feel better (the direct or indirect recipients of your acts of kindness) as well as yourself as you may feel you are doing your part-doing what you can-to make this world a better place.
The word “purposeful” preceding “kindness” is just what it reads to be. It means making a conscious effort and going out of your way a little to be kind.
So! Here are 11 ways to incorporate purposeful kindness into your
daily life, helping others and contributing to healthy mental and emotional well-being😊
1. Save a life: Instead of killing the spider you find in your house (or some
other insect), take it and put it outside.
2. Smile and say “hello” when you pass people-even if your present state
of mind is deep in negativity. No one deserves your negativity-it spreads
faster than COVD 19, but so does a smile! (Check out emotional
3. Let someone with less groceries at the checkout behind you go
4. See some garbage lying around on your route? Pick up some garbage
when you are out for a walk and put it in the trash (or recycling or
compost) instead of walking by it.
5. Listen to someone. Truly, really, really listen-even a stranger. It may be
the only person in their lives that day that holds space for them.
6. Instead of picking a nice flower you walk by because you like it, leave it
there for others to walk by and enjoy.
7. Compliment someone. But! The key is not on a physical characteristic
or attribute. i.e., not “I like your hair cut”, but try complimenting a nonphysical attribute such as a strength, an act of courage, i.e. “I really
admire how you handled….”
8. Offer help and support: This one may not seem unique, but many
people do not feel comfortable asking for help, even if they need it. And in
turn, we often “impose” our help.
So, try asking, “How can I best support you?” or “What do you need me to be right now?”
9. Give something to someone that you value but that you may not
have (the theory behind this being that what you give out, will come back to
you). I am not talking material goods. I am talking something like
nurturance or compassion. Feeling unappreciated? Appreciate
10. Forgive someone.
11. Let’s end nice and easy here-some of these are deep:Water a plant in need!
When you don’t know what to say, or what to do to help someone, something or someone else, try some kindness on:)
Now it is your turn. Do you have any ideas of implementing purposeful kindness that you can add to this list?