How kind have you been today?

world kindness day

Writer Mark Twain summed kindness up

by  symphony of love 

Today, 13th November, is World Kindness Day, a relatively new tradition that was established in 1998 by the World Kindness Movement. The original idea behind the day was to encourage both groups and individuals to perform different acts of kindness around the world, thereby encouraging everyone to be kinder to others so we could all benefit from the positivity that is generated through kindness to one’s fellow man. And it seems that people like the idea – with more and more groups and organisations joining in World Kindness Day activities each year.

Over the years, different group events, such as buying a friend a cup of tea, have been organised to mark World Kindness Day and raise awareness about the benefits of being kind to others. Examples of big group activities include:


  • A Worldwide Freeze Mob Flash Dance organised by Life Vest Inside


  • Free gerbera plants being handed out to 30,000 people by the Singapore Kindness Movement


  • 10,000 free chocolate bars being handed out at rail stations by Kindness UK


Whether it’s handing out free stuff or celebrating together the kindness of others, World Kindness Day events are all about putting a smile on everyone’s faces. But it’s not all about group activities.

So what did you do for Kindness Day this year? Or did it pass you by and now you’re thinking you’ve missed it? If so, don’t worry, you don’t have to restrict your acts of kindness for one day a year. Even the smallest gesture by one individual can make a huge difference to another person’s day, and it can be just as beneficial for the person being kind as for the person on the receiving end of someone else’s kindness.

What kindness does            

world kindness day

A simple gesture can mean a lot

Acts of kindness increase the connection between us as people. Being kind cheers people up when they’re having a bad day, and showing kindness to another person can cost you nothing, but at the same time be incredibly rewarding. The benefits of kindness include:


  • A feel-good factor, on both sides of the kindness equation


  • A natural high, sparked by the released of dopamine, a happy hormone, when you do something nice for someone else


  • Good karma – if you act nicely towards other people, that will surely be reflected in the way people treat you


  • Research by psychologists has shown that acts of altruism actually increase levels of happiness for the person who is kind to others


Keep the kindness momentum going

Many of us put ourselves and our families first most of the time. While this is normal, it’s not to say it’s the best way to live life. Being kind to others, to strangers, once a year on World Kindness Day is a nice gesture, and it reminds us about the part we have to play in society. But is once a year really enough? A great goal to have would be to make those random acts of kindness that we carry out more frequent. We could build up slowly, starting off by doing something kind for someone we don’t know at the beginning of every month, and then when we’ve achieved that change our goal to doing something kind once a week. And if we got a positive response for our acts of kindness, we could even build it up to once a day – how hard can it be to show others a gesture of kindness during the course of our busy day?

Why not make a resolution now, at the end of this year’s World Kindness Day, to increase the kind things you do for others over the next year? You’re sure to feel the benefits for doing so.

Ben Warrow