When we make a decision to enjoy life, it seems natural to make kindness, consideration and generosity priorities. It is hard to imagine anything that could give us more joy than spreading joy to others.
Dr. Wayne Dyer talks about studies which conclude that serotonin, a neurotransmitter in the brain which elevates a sense of well-being, is stimulated when a person commits a kind act, is the recipient of kindness or even observes kindness. In my research, I have not been able to find the specific studies he refers to or any attribution, but it practically seems like common sense. If you just imagine doing something nice, receiving or witnessing kindness, you feel your spirits lifting. You can’t help but smile. You feel inspired. My previous post, Be an Inspiration, talks more about this.
Selflessness Leads to Joy and Serenity
When we put the needs of others before our own desires, life frustrations ceases to exist. Imagine what it feels like to concentrate on getting in front of as many cars as possible when driving hastily on the freeway. On the other hand, imagine what it feels like to slow down a bit to allow someone else to get in front of you. At one extreme, you have stress, anger, self-importance and frustration; on the other side, you have peace, a sense of connectedness with others and serenity.
Connect to Others Indiscriminately
When we let go of our sense of superior self-importance and the expectations that leads us to have on others, it becomes easier to practice love and forgiveness, to connect to others, to develop friendships and deep relationships. When the value of the grocery store checkout clerk matches that of a favorite celebrity, political leader or writer, we find meaningful connections with others each moment of life.
Kindness Benefits Ourselves
Kindness and generosity are not the sacrifices they may seem to be when we are stuck in a self-important state of mind. Through practice, it becomes clear that practicing these principles enriches our lives like no selfish act ever could. We begin to see that every contribution we make to those around us is a contribution to ourselves.
Through kindness, we develop connections with people who will feel compelled to pass our kindness on to others and back to us. We will see improvements in the dynamics around us and within us.
Kindness Makes Business Sense
In the professional world, relationships that are built on kindness lead to mutual success. For most successful people and businesses, kindness and philanthropy play a big part in their success, expressing gratitude to those who have aided in their success is common and generosity builds loyalty.
Clearly, when businesses choose to make charitable contributions, there is a return on the contributions that exceeds the level of contribution. And, so it is the same for individuals.
Daily Action – Make a Small Contribution
Look for a small contribution to make today. It could be picking up a piece of litter or cleaning up a mess that you did not make, giving money to a charity, etc. Expect nothing in return. Notice how it makes you feel and feel free to share a comment below.