Although 94 % of us claim we are ‘giving’ people, 23 % confess we have never performed a “random act of kindness.”
“People who engage in kind acts become happier over time,” says Sonja Lyubomirsky, Ph.D., a professor of psychology at the University of California, Riverside. “When you are kind to others, you feel good as a person — more moral, optimistic, and positive,” she says. Lyubomirsky has studied happiness for over 20 years.
Acts of kindness create an emotional warmth, which releases a hormone known as oxytocin. Oxytocin causes the release of a chemical called nitric oxide, which dilates the blood vessels. This reduces blood pressure and, therefore, oxytocin is known as a “cardioprotective” hormone. It protects the heart by lowering blood pressure.
When we give ourselves, especially if we start young, everything from life satisfaction to self-realization and physical health is significantly improved. Mortality is delayed, depression is reduced and well-being and good fortune are increased.
The moral of the story is to be kind and do kind acts for others. You can benefit your heart, reduce anxiety, lower blood pressure, and simply be a happier human being. Who wouldn’t want that?
TOP 5 RANDOM ACTS OF KINDNESS
1. Letting someone go ahead of us in front of the queue (51%)
2. Checking in on a loved one (49%)
3. Asking after the wellbeing/health of a neighbour (43%)
4. Looking after a pet/garden/taken delivery of post for a neighbour while away (26%)
5. Giving up your seat for an elderly/pregnant person on public transportation (22%)