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How to Show Kindness

by Lois R. Earles
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Arguably, the most important thing anyone can be is kind. Consequently, we should all be making the necessary steps to become kinder individuals. As a general rule, everyone should treat others how they wish to be treated. Despite this, it can be easy to lose sight of just how much our actions impact other people. It’s true that kindness is contagious, meaning if you start being kind, it will inspire others to do the same.

Moreover, being kind comes with many health benefits, including a reduction in anxiety and stress, which increases life expectancy. Detailed below are some of the best ways to show kindness.

Donate to Charity

One of the most effective ways of showing kindness is via a charitable donation. This is compulsory for many cultures, such as Islam. For instance, Muslims are required to give Zakat, which is a “tax” on their wealth. In order to pay Zakat, they must give a percentage of their wealth to the needy. It’s very easy to disregard all the privileges we have in life, which can make us reluctant to share our blessings. Despite this, recognizing that there are others out there that have less than us and doing what we can to help is one of the kindest things that can be done.

Send Care Packages

Care packages are so simple yet so effective, and they don’t have to be expensive, either. Consider sending your family members or friends a care package containing, books, pampering items, their favorite snacks, or anything else you like.

Make sure you do this “just because”, instead of on a birthday or for Christmas. This will show them that you really care and, if they’re feeling down, it could really brighten their week. The feeling of making someone smile should be what drives acts of kindness, such as putting together a care package.

Be a Good Listener

We really underestimate the power of listening, and we’re often too quick to speak. More often than not, if someone’s having a hard time, they just need someone to listen to them vent. It’s not uncommon for people to simply listen to someone just so they have enough information to form a response. Instead of doing this, actively listen to someone for the sake of listening. By doing so, you’ll make them feel as though a weight has been lifted, and you’ll feel good about the fact that you’ve helped them.

Offer a Helping Hand

Asking for help is by no means an easy thing to do, so you can make someone’s life a whole lot easier by simply offering them help when you see them struggling. It’s a natural response for people to run from help, as we often see it as a sign of weakness. Despite this, there are things you can do to help others. These include the following:

• Spending time at a local organization, such as a homeless shelter or nursing home
• Holding the door for a stranger
• Sending a motivational message to a family member or friend
• Assisting a co-worker with a project
• Paying for someone else’s food/drink order

Focus on Others (Within Reason)

One of the most important factors of being kind is focusing on others. That said, it’s still essential that you put yourself first. While it’s important to consider the needs and feelings of others, you can’t compromise your own needs to fulfill these. After all, you can’t water flowers from an empty cup; your needs to be met before you can give assistance to others. Once you’re in a good place, you can show goodwill, understanding, and compassion to others.

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