6 Reasons to Wake Up with Kindness


The saying about waking up on the wrong side of the bed certainly holds true, at times. Feeling down in the morning can ruin an entire day and experts are showing that this attitude can have a negative impact on health. It’s worth taking a few extra steps to reset attitude and gratitude toward others.

Breakfast in bed on a lazy day is an awesome way to wake up to kindness though, let’s face it, this isn’t realistic on a daily basis. Maybe you’re in a rush to get the kids out of school or don’t have time for morning yoga, but I bet you do have 6 seconds to spare for a quick, kind pick me up that is much better than an alarm.

Six of Many Reasons to Fill Your Morning with Kindness

1. Kindness is contagious.

We feel good when we personally experience compassion or see someone perform an act of kindness. Studies have proven that this compels us to perform altruistic acts and motivates us to become better people. Couldn’t we use a bit more kindness in the world?

2. Kindness is good for your heart.

Here is the simple explanation. Kindness produces the hormone oxytocin in the brain and throughout the body. Oxytocin causes the release of a chemical that dilates blood vessels called nitric oxide. Dilating blood vessels lowers blood pressure. So, it can be said that kindness is good for your heart both metaphorically and physically.

3. Kindness slows aging.

A Harvard study revealed that loving-kindness meditation, a Buddhist practice that directs kindness and well wishes toward themselves and others, can help slow aging. The explanation is extremely technical and has to do with telomeres which are linked to aging. Basically, the longer they are the better and this type of meditation makes them longer. Stress makes them shorter.

4. Kindness strengthens your immune system.

Research has also shown that kindness releases serotonin in the brains of both the giver and receiver of kindness. Seratonin has an important role in calming, mood regulating, and combating anxiety.

5. Kindness fosters healthy relationships.

This goes without saying. We want to be around people who are kind and compassionate, not those who aren’t. Kindness is also reciprocated.

6. Kindness has long term effects on the kids in your life.

Kids who are kind and happy are more focused on their studies, less prone to bullying, less prone to discipline and able to get along with their peers better. The best way to teach kids kindness is by setting a good example.

Humankindness… There’s an App for That

An easy way to inject some kindness into your morning is via the Dignity Health Rise&Smile app. The traveler in me likes the fact that you can wake up in the morning to short, kind video messages from strangers all around the world. The videos arrive at random and are only 6 seconds long. Of course, the videos are approved by Dignity Health in advance for quality and content. And, they are cute.

Then, submit your own kind video for others. The kids will think this part is a blast. And, just like that, you’ve spread some humankindness. I, of course, had to submit a video of my dog who jumps on the bed to wake me up every morning. Here’s how the app works.

The app can be used on any Android or iOS mobile device. Get more information about the Hello Humankindness project.

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