You have probably heard of the Golden Rule that promotes treating others the way you would like to be treated. But did you know that being kind to others benefits you as well? Science has discovered many ways in which your own health will improve when you spread kindness.
1. Relieves Anxiety
When you look for ways to help others, your mood improves. You take your mind off of your troubles by seeing the needs of others and responding to them. This increases your positive affect, or PA, which involves your feelings of happiness and interest.
2. Protects Your Heart
That wonderful feeling you get when you help someone is a hormone called oxytocin. Oxytocin is responsible for the release of nitric oxide into your blood. Nitric oxide protects your heart by lowering blood pressure, which makes for a healthier heart.
3. Keeps You Healthy
People who volunteer are less likely to have inflammation in their bodies. The oxytocin that is released through kindness acts on inflammation to lessen its physical effects, which means a healthier you.
4. Helps You Feel Good
Serotonin is released in your body when you do something for someone else. This creates more than just a feeling. The powerful neurotransmitter lowers depression and sends endorphins to your brain, which gives you an emotional high.
5. Lowers Stress
Showing kindness gives your body a break from cortisol, which is the stress hormone. In fact, as a perpetually kind person, you may experience consistently lower cortisol levels, which has a side benefit of slowing down the aging process. You will also likely be able to cope with your own stressful situations better after helping someone else.
Researchers have discovered many empirical reasons to be kind. Spread some kindness today and take note of how it helps your body and your emotions.