The Benefits of Random Acts of Kindness

According to the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation, here’s why random acts of kindness are also good for your well-being:

  • Random acts increase your love hormone.

    You don’t even have to perform acts of kindness. Simply witnessing them produces oxytocin, the “love hormone,” which helps lower blood pressure and improve overall heart health. Oxytocin also boosts self-esteem and optimism.

  • They increase energy.

    About half of the participants in one study reported feeling stronger and more energetic after helping others; many also said they were calmer and less depressed, with increased feelings of self-worth.

  • Giving to others reduces depression and improves well-being.

    This according to Stephen Post of Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, who serves as president of the Institute for Research on Unlimited Love.

  • People who volunteer enjoy better health.

    Helping others has been shown to protect overall health twice as much as daily baby aspirin protects against heart disease. In another study, people aged 55 and over who volunteered for 2 or more organizations had an impressive 44 percent lower likelihood of dying early, even with unhealthy habits.

  • Perpetually kind people have 23 percent less cortisol than the average population.

  • They also age two times slower.

  • They experience less anxiety.

    In one study at the University of British Columbia, a group of highly anxious individuals performed at least 6 acts of kindness a week. After a month, they reported a significant increase in positive moods and relationship satisfaction and a decrease in social avoidance anxiety.

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