Steve Siegle, LPC
Psychiatry and Psychology
talking about health
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Kindness is more than behavior. The art of kindness involves cultivating a helpful spirit, as well as being generous and considerate, and doing so without expecting anything in return. Kindness is a quality of being. The act of giving kindness is often easy, free, positive, and healthy.
good for the body
Kindness has been shown to increase self-esteem, empathy and compassion, and improve mood. It can lower blood pressure and the stress hormone cortisol, which directly affects stress levels. People who eat a balanced diet also tend to be healthier and live longer. Kindness can increase your sense of connection with others, which can have a direct impact on loneliness, improve mood, and improve overall relationships. It can also be contagious. Finding ways to show kindness can give you an activity to focus on, especially if you tend to be anxious or stressed in some social situations.
good for the mind
Physiologically, kindness can positively change your brain. Kindness increases serotonin and dopamine, which are neurotransmitters in the brain that give you a sense of contentment and well-being and turn on the pleasure/reward centers in your brain. Endorphins, your body's natural pain relievers, can also be released.Discover ways to create happiness.
be kind to yourself
It's not just about how you treat other people, it's about how you extend the same behaviors and intentions to yourself. I think you can be kinder in your own internal dialogue andpractice gratitude. People are good at verbally slapping each other and rarely work as a stimulus. Instead, negativity often causes you to dissolve and even creates a vicious cycle where you regularly get depressed. You would not speak to your neighbor as you sometimes speak to yourself. That is what I call a "good neighbor policy" that can be useful. If you wouldn't tell your good neighbor, don't tell about yourself.
to take action
Just ask yourself, "How am I going to practice kindness today?" it could be useful. As homework, I asked a few clients to pay attention and periodically throughout the day to record how kind they were to others, especially to themselves. This positive approach is like planting positive seeds in your mental garden. Where the focus goes, energy flows.
I was recently talking about kindness with a young customer who asked me if I would like him to come into the ark. I asked what that meant. The customer said: "Random gestures of kindness." That was a great response from a young man. And you? Are you ready to enter the ark?
Consider joining the Mayo Clinic health care systemKindness Kickstart Programto start your journey of kindness. The show offers many ideas on how to spread kindness.
In closing, I would like to leave you with this quote: “Be nice whenever possible. It is always possible." - Dalai Lama
steve siegelis a Professional Counselor Licensed inPsychiatry and PsychologytheyMenomonia, Wisconsin.
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