Paying it forward. The norm of reciprocity. The power of empathy. These are all concepts within the practice of kindness. There are biological responses to kindness, as it releases chemicals in the brain that are the same as those when we experience love. Interestingly, it turns out kindness was a skill that helped our ancestors survive, a key evolutionary trail. There is a certain amount of it that can be cultivated and some that is genetically hard wired within us. The power kindness holds is one of action, for which people can connect with others, and oftentimes, with our own selves in the process. Here are 5 podcasts that touch upon the influence of kindness:
- Spreading compassion into the world, one small gesture at a time. This podcast touches on the acts of kindness either toward someone we know or a complete stranger and how it can impact and change our lives for the better.
- This podcast lists 5 big ideas and action items to follow through with afterward. Teaching a child morals is a way of life that starts with the parents. The best way to do this is to make kindness and caring for others a priority, show them by example or have a casual dinner conversation about how you think a decision may impact others. It is also important to make your children show and express their gratitude.
- In this podcast the core roots of connection are discussed, to remind us of how loving kindness is intrinsic to all of us regardless of our experience or history. It is to be in a non-judgmental and quiet space within ourselves and toward others. We must be able to drop the obstacles in the way of us being open and able to connect.
- Connection to human emotion, sharing stories that people can relate to is the key to helping a society increase its level of compassion and kindness. In this podcast we hear the story of a young man, who began ‘unsung heroes’ – highlighting stories of everyday people, tapping into the working class, and what their particularly history is. People who watch this project, have helped those who are featured achieve their dreams, or find some happiness. His project has now moved into a full blown non profit organization that helps people through kindness.
- This Ted Talk video by Stefan Klein, is different in that it highlights a study that was done that shows that people are happier when they do good things for others. He touches upon the research in science behind how kindness evolved in the brain of our ancestors up to today, and how emotions are our motivations.
Being kind to ourselves and toward others is the first step in beginning to connect with the essence of what unites us all. A bonus finding in all this kindness research is that people who care for others are happier, healthier and live longer.
Do you read a great blog about kindness that’s not on the list? Leave a comment on FB!
Larissa Gomes is a breast cancer survivor and single mom to her spirited baby boy! Originally from Toronto turned Angeleno, she has worked in roles from writer, actor and producer for well over a decade. In that time, she’s developed concepts, film and television screenplays, short stories, along with freelance articles, blogging and editing work.