It’s fair to say we are all experiencing a bit of Covid-fatigue right now. No matter what our own individual situations, it is having an impact on everyone’s lives in some way, shape or form. Some of us have had it worse than others, but we have all had our own battles since March.
This month’s challenge is not a physical activity one. We want to spread some love and joy to those around us and challenge you all to some random acts of kindness.
It costs nothing to be kind, and we know that all you Be Strongers are a really lovely lot, and will jump on board with this challenge.
This also ties in nicely with ‘Self Care Week 2020’ which falls on 16th – 22nd November. Random Acts of Kindness don’t just make the recipient feel good, the giver and also any witnesses feel good too, so Random Acts of Kindness are a great way to improve your own well being as well as others.
What will performing Random Acts of Kindness do?
According to PositivePsychology.com, Random Acts of Kindness can have lots of wonderful effects for you, the recipient and even bystanders. They say that according to various psychological studies:
- Recipients of kindness can feel loved.
- Recipients and givers of kindness can experience a sense of awe when they think about profound acts of love or virtue.
- You can lower your blood pressure from acts of kindness. An act of kindness creates emotional warmth, which releases a hormone known as oxytocin (the love hormone). 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. Whether you are recipient or giver or merely just a witness you can feel the benefits of an increase in oxytocin.
- Kindness can increase the feeling of strength and energy due to helping others.
- Kindness can also make one feel calmer.
- Kindness can make you and the recipient feel less depressed.
- Kindness give you increased feelings of self-worth.
- For those that volunteer their time or money for charitable causes, they often have fewer aches and pains.
- Kindness is most similar to a medical anti-depressant. Kindness pushes your body to produce serotonin, which is commonly known as the “feel-good” chemical that provides healing and calming feelings.
- Kindness decreases pain by generating endorphins (the brain’s natural painkiller).
- It has been shown that people that are more kind have 23% less cortisol (the stress hormone) and age slower than the average population.
- The University of British Columbia did a study on a group of highly anxious individuals in which they performed at least 6 acts of kindness a week. After one month, there was a significant increase in positive moods, relationship satisfaction and a decrease in social avoidance in socially anxious individuals.
- Depression is reduced, mortality is delayed, and well-being and good fortune are improved when we give of ourselves.
So, what have we got to lose, being kind costs nothing and what you do can mean the world to someone.
What do I have to do?
Once a week, we want you to perform a Random Act of Kindness. It doesn’t have to be anything elaborate or health and fitness related, simply paying someone a compliment is enough. When you have completed it, tell us about it in the thread in the forums. We will prompt you regularly enough, to keep it fresh in your minds, but we really want to hear what you have been up to. Let’s start a kindness revolution for November!!
Some ideas are:
- Take out your neighbours bins – on a cold, wet and windy morning, there would be nothing nicer than finding someone has already done that job for you!
- Paying someone a compliment – the lady at the bus stop, or the man you walk past in the street, or the child sat in the trolley in the queue in front of you at Tesco’s – tell them something nice about themselves.
- Say thank you to someone – sometimes people don’t always know how much we appreciate them – A simple ‘thank you for being you’ goes a long way!
- Make something for someone – do you cook, bake, knit, sew, draw, paint? Get creative with your kindness
- Praise a local business online – all local businesses need our support right now, share the love of your favourite businesses and tell the world how great they are on your social media
- Pay someone a coffee forward at the coffee shop
- Shop local!
- Give someone your favourite book
- Organise a community clean up
- Tip serving staff
- Send someone a handwritten letter or card
- Pick up rubbish when you’re out and about
- Have a clear out and give to a local charity
- Carry out some fundraising
- Make someone laugh or smile
- Offer to run an errand for your neighbours
Who’s up for generating a bit of joy this November? Tell us your ideas for Random Acts of Kindness below!