This post was updated on 12/11/22
Did you know that kindness is contagious?
One study found that people are more likely to perform feats of generosity after observing others do the same. This effect can ripple throughout the community, inspiring dozens of individuals to make a difference.
According to Psychology Today, ‘Kindness means a behavioural response of compassion and actions that are selfless; or a mindset that places compassion for others before one’s own interests.’
The miracle of kindness is that it is contagious and something we should all want to pass on and spread to many others.’
If we practice kindness as a regular habit, a number of studies have found that it can have a directly positive impact of our own mental and physical health too.
That’s why kindness – in big and small ways – is more important than ever. Your one random act of kindness could change someone’s day and start a chain reaction of kindness, benefiting yours and their wellbeing.
I originally published this blog post in February 2020, when I found out about the tragic death of Caroline Flack. A woman that was so loved and full of love. I was so upset when I heard the news. Maybe because she was a similar age to me, maybe because I saw her speak live at an event so learnt more about her as a lovely person. Maybe because I could see how unfairly she was being treated on social media.
I was always taught if you haven’t got anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all. That might sound simplistic, but you never know what someone is going through and just because it’s via a keyboard, doesn’t mean what you say is any less harmful. I feel compelled to help to bring more kindness into the world, to yourselves but also to others. Wouldn’t it be fantastic if that was Caroline’s legacy? To counteract the nastiness, let’s spread as much kindness as we can! This blog post will suggest 33 ways to be kind and brighten someone’s day.
Try these simple ways to be kind and brighten someone’s day
- Say good morning/hello to a stranger-you might just make them smile.
- Let someone in front of you in the queue. Are you doing your weekly shopping but can see the person behind you only has a couple of items? Letting them pay first is a simple way to be kind
- Hold the door open for someone with their hands full.
- Ask someone how they are. Then ask again to find out how they really are. They might just open up to you.
- Pay someone a genuine compliment
- Call on a neighbour you haven’t seen in a while. They might not have seen anyone in a while
- Surprise your colleague or loved one with a cuppa tea or coffee.
- Give your time to a friend that needs it.
- Donate to a charity that means something to you. This could mean donate money, but it doesn’t have to be. You could donate your time or unwanted items from your home. It’s a good opportunity to have a sort through of your belongings and declutter things you no longer need.
- Volunteer at a local community project.
- Sit on a communal table at a coffee shop. Show you are happy to talk to someone. There might be times when you would prefer to sit your own and that’s okay too. This isn’t about putting pressure on you and saying you have to always. However when you’re feeling sociable, why not give it a go.
- Buy a coffee for the person behind you in the queue
- Leave positive Post It Notes around town. Imagine how much joy you’d bring to the person who finds one.
14. Leave a positive comment on a blog or social media account you follow.
15. Look on Facebook to see who you can wish happy birthday to
16. Call a friend you haven’t spoken to in a while
17. Message a friend just to say good morning/good night.
18. Drive with kindness
This is one of the most life-changing ways to be kind, as people aren’t really expecting it. So for example you could wave a pedestrian across the street or let a car through. Another way, which might surprise you, is to be kind when you’re stuck in traffic. You never know what the cause of that traffic jam might be
19. Pass along a great book you’ve just finished reading
You’re probably not going to read it again, but by passing the book on to someone that will read it, you’re sharing the joy.
20. Randomly buy a friend or family member some flowers
21. Ask someone about their day
22. Introduce yourself to a new neighbour
23. Organise a community event for your neighbourhood
24. Introduce two people who you think would get along
25. Leave some money in the car parking machine
26. Leave a tip in the restaurant. Show people in consumer-facing industries (like the food delivery person or your Uber driver) that you appreciate all they do by tipping 5 percent more than you usually do if you can afford it.
27. Leave a glowing review. Do you rely on reviews to decide if you’re going to buy something or use a service like a hairdresser or nail salon? If you’re happy with a product or service, leave a review to help others decide.
28. Stop to help someone who looks lost
29. Buy a gift card to hand to someone on your way out of the coffee shop
30. Donate your old mobile phone to a charity
31. Buy products from a small local business
32. Adopt a Grandparent. Go to a local care home and ask who doesn’t get many visitors or gifts.
33. Send a random thank you email to someone you admire
Lets start a positive movement; use social media for good. Post about the simple ways you are being kind, and tag me @tinasimplyshine. Then I invite you to tag three friends so they continue this. Let’s see how long we can keep it going for and how many people it can reach.