Exhibiting kindness, even in the smallest doses, can impact the brain composition of both the giver and the receiver by releasing hormones like oxytocin and endorphins. A recent study has shown that small acts of kindness positively affect the levels of happiness it generates for both the giver and receiver. Additionally, it helps us build and sustain bonds with others and creates a positive human connection built on kindness.  


How can you use kindness in your daily life? We developed four recommendations on cultivating kindness to help yourself and others.  


Recognize someone  

Did you know that giving compliments can make people happier than receiving them? This is because making a thoughtful, genuine compliment requires us to think about someone else. Thinking about other people is often a precondition to feeling connected to them. Therefore, compliments enhance connections and positivity in relationships and make us happier.  


Invest in something bigger than yourself  

Acts of kindness can make the world a happier place for everyone. If you have friends or neighbors going through a difficult time, see what you can do to help. Doing things like volunteering or helping someone in need shapes both how others perceive us and how we view ourselves. Our acts of kindness make us believe that we have what it takes to be a good person.   


The more you do for others, the more you do for yourself   

Taking the time to help others and display kindness has a significant impact. These acts of kindness can boost feelings of confidence, being in control, happiness, and optimism. For example, volunteering and helping others can help us feel a sense of belonging, make new friends, and connect with our communities.  


Don’t overdo it  

While we want to show kindness and appreciation for others, it is essential that we also work to take care of ourselves. If you’re giving too much or beyond our means, it may be time to take a step back. Oftentimes when we struggle, we can focus too much on others. Make sure you are leaving enough kindness for yourself.   


What’s Next?  

Looking for some ideas on how to start? It doesn’t have to be extensive or costly! Below is a helpful graphic outlining a few suggestions for kindness.