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What’s kindness got to do with it?

The intersection of kindness and wellness may surprise you.

Research shows that engaging in acts of kindness can improve your mood by boosting levels of serotonin and dopamine, neurotransmitters that produce feelings of satisfaction and well-being and cause the pleasure center in your brain to light up.

Engaging in acts of kindness also can decrease cortisol, the hormone directly correlated with stress levels. Moreover, studies show that the receiver of the kindness also may experience these positive effects.*

And encouraging kindness can’t start at too young an age. Check out the image below – a big sister being kind to her younger sister on their walk home from school (Note: Their parents are cut out of the photo).**

It reminds me of all the times my older brother guided and advised me, and helped me out of jams before physics exams. His acts of kindness always made me feel better and helped me believe that I could do whatever it was I was being challenged by in the moment.

He reminded me to stop being so critical of myself – something I still struggle with from time to time. Remember, included in these acts of kindness are the ones we show ourselves.

During this Mental Health Awareness Month of May, and every other month for that matter, let’s all engage in acts of kindness:

  1. Say hello to the barista, the security guard, and the cashier at the store;
  2. Consider being self compassionate and give yourself some slack, when you notice you are being hard on yourself.
  3. Send flowers to someone you care about, just because.
  4. Give praise to a colleague for something they have done well.

What acts of kindness make you feel good?

I would love to hear from you.

#wellness #Mental Health Awareness Month #kindness #selfcompassion

*The Art of Kindness, Mayo Clinic Health System (2023).
**Photo posted with the express permission of the parents.


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215-260-4881 - gail@gailcummings.com