Why You Should Practice Being Kind More Often
Kindness is a quality that you undoubtedly value and appreciate in others. Indeed, you love being around those positive, understanding, nice people who treat you with respect and consideration. However, kindness tends to be a rare feature that’s hard to find. Why is this? Perhaps it’s because nobody stops to reflect on its importance.
After all, you rarely hear a parent say that one of their goals is for their child to be kind. Nor do you, as an adult, tend to make an effort to work on this trait in yourself. In fact, you’re more likely to be focused on your success, wealth, or status. However, in reality, it’s the threads of kindness that are woven through human relationships that have the greatest positive impact on your life. For this reason, in this article, we want to remind you how wonderful it is to be kind.
Psychological research has identified agreeableness (kindness) as one of the Big Five personality traits. In fact, several authors classify five dimensions of personality traits. These are extraversion, agreeableness, openness to experience, conscientiousness, and neuroticism.
In this way, agreeableness or kindness is defined as the tendency of a person to be altruistic, friendly, considerate, and trusting. Kind people are easygoing and calm, humble, and simple. Furthermore, they feel great empathy toward the feelings of others and are willing to assist and make those around them feel comfortable.
Like any element of the personality, kindness is present to a different degree in everyone. Whether it’s due to genetic, environmental, or educational factors, or a mixture of all three, the truth is that people aren’t all equally kind. However, you can work on developing yourself in this regard and thus achieve its benefits.
Kindness is a balm for the heart
When you’re kind you make the lives of those around you better and easier. That’s because an understanding look, a comforting word, or a knowing smile can all contribute to brightening up another’s day. Indeed, everyone knows that sadness, anger, and disappointment are relieved by the human warmth received from relatives or strangers. Furthermore, you never know what battles others might be fighting so you should always be kind. Remember, your attitude can make a real difference to someone’s day.
“Be kind, for everyone is fighting a hard battle.”
Being kind brings you closer to the brighter side of life
One of the most positive aspects of exercising this quality is that it benefits everyone involved. In fact, by being kind, you not only make the other person’s experience more agreeable but you generally receive the same in return. Indeed, you’re far more responsive to those who approach you with warmth and respect. In addition, you’re more willing to smile back and help them. Therefore, always try and be the one who takes the first step.
Being nice also contributes to your psychological well-being. It helps you focus on the more pleasant and caring aspects of life. You expect the best from other people and you’re better able to perceive and help them. You trust, understand, and look kindly on them. By doing so, you have a far more positive experience. In fact, whoever shies away from kindness lives with hostility and suspicion. This hurts them more than anything or anyone else can.
“When given the choice between being right or being kind, choose kind.”
Start with you
If kindness has the power to transform a person’s mood, your duty is to also begin to apply it to yourself. Be kind to yourself, accept your mistakes, your fears, and your shortcomings. It’s a fundamental part of self-love. Learn to look at yourself with compassion and give yourself unconditional support. Stop being your fiercest critic and become your greatest support, your best friend.
Being kind to those who least deserve it is a noble act
Finally, it’s clear that practicing kindness isn’t always easy. As a matter of fact, some people respond to kind gestures harshly and ungratefully. This might lead you to want to repay them in the same way. However, you should know that the one who least deserves your kindness is usually the one who needs it the most. Therefore, when someone is hostile, irritable, or rude, have the courage to respond in a polite way. Don’t let others decide how you’re going to behave. It’s your decision.
“Being nice to someone you don’t like doesn’t mean you’re fake, it means you’re mature enough to tolerate your dislike of them.”
To be kind, you have to work on it
Ultimately, being kind can be challenging, especially in certain circumstances. Despite this fact, the benefits derived from kindness are so great that it’s well worth making the effort to employ it on a day-to-day basis. Therefore, appeal to your tolerance and compassion, and instead of taking something personally, remember that we’re all human and we all have bad days from time to time.
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
- ter Laak, J. (1996). Las cinco grandes dimensiones de la personalidad. Revista de psicología, 14(2), 129-181.
- García-Álvarez, D., Hernández-Lalinde, J., Espinosa-Castro, J. F., Cobo-Rendón, R., & Soler, M. J. (2020). Virtudes y fortalezas del carácter en la adolescencia: medición, comparación y relación con bienestar psicológico. Archivos Venezolanos de Farmacología y Terapéutica, 39(4), 476-484.