13 November 2017

Did you know that World Kindness Day is marked each year on 13th November? This Day offers a lovely opportunity to celebrate the importance of kindness, so the Network of Wellbeing has shared five ways to be kind to yourself and others on 13th November (and every day!).  Inspired by the Five Ways to Wellbeing, being kind can also improve your wellbeing!

Ladies connecting arms.

1. Connect
Building relationships and connecting with others is one of the most important things we can do to improve our wellbeing, and it’s also a great way to be kind. Sadly loneliness is all too common today, but there are lots of ways we can connect. Simply giving an unexpected call to someone you haven’t seen in a while or starting a conversation with a friendly stranger can make a massive difference to their wellbeing – and yours.

 2. Keep learning together
You can learn more about kindness by getting involved in community projects, which can help you to connect with your neighbours too. The Network of Wellbeing (NOW) is working with Eden Project Communities and others to host a Devon Community Action Day in Exeter on 18th November, to build the capacity of community groups. If you’re based close by you’re welcome to join, or you can search for relevant projects and events in your own area.

 3. Get active
Being kind to yourself is actually just as important as being kind to others.  Try getting active and doing some gentle exercise. It needn’t be a marathon; you can simply try a nice walk in the local park, a swim or just a dance to your favourite song around the living room. Research has shown that exercise is great for our health and can also make us happier; so be kind to yourself by getting active! And why not invite a friend along? That way you both get the benefit.

 4. Give
Altruism and giving to others is a kind thing to do and can bring us more happiness than accumulating wealth or physical possessions. Giving to others doesn’t need to involve money. You can simply give your full attention to someone else, give goods you don’t need to a charity, or give your time for a good cause. All of these things will show kindness to others, and be good for your health and wellbeing too!

 5. Take notice
Often we go through life on auto-pilot, missing everyday acts of kindness offered to us and opportunities for us to be kind. Keep your eyes peeled on 13th November for opportunities to put simple acts of kindness into practice: smile at someone on your way to work, take some extra time to listen to a friend in need, buy a coffee for a stranger. There are so many ways to spread kindness, and make a difference to your own and others’ lives. And don’t forget to notice when people are kind to you – showing gratitude is good for our wellbeing and for those who are good to us.

Spread a little kindness!

Share your random acts of kindness with us on Facebook and you might win a copy of The Little Book of Kindness by Bernadette Russell.

What are your favourite acts of kindness to give or receive? Share with The Network of Wellbeing @NetwrkWellbeing on Twitter and they’ll re-tweet the best ones they see! 

You can also get involved in the Museum of Happiness' #kindnesscontest17: Do something kind, post about it online with the hashtag and nominate two friends to join in. You can watch the spread of kindness live from 9AM on Monday on a special website http://kindness.party

 'Altruism and giving to others can bring us more happiness than accumulating wealth or physical possessions'