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Recent stories

Today, an older gentleman paid for my groceries. I think he saw my frustration as Shiloh was getting cranky and her register messing up. He insisted that he wanted to pay for everything. Thank you, kind stranger.

Yesterday, by Amanda Lynn Rivera (via Everett Hood via Marcia Johnston), Kentucky, US

Stephen Parish Printed us all updated contact sheets

Dec 6, by Matthew, Oregon, US

A kind soul just saw my overflowing Target cart and offered me her 20% off entire purchase coupon. She just helped my CHRISTmas be a little more merry!

Nov 30, by Angie York, Kentucky, US

From the newsletter

December 10, 2018

This week’s letter is brought to you by Angie York, an agent for family and consumer sciences at the Lyon County Extension in Eddyville, Kentucky.

I believe some people are born with kindness in their hearts. We all know people who are always ready to help and ask for nothing in return. I also believe that some people will be kind only if they expect to benefit from their actions.

In my job working for a land-grant university, I spend my days helping people learn how to eat healthier, exercise, and manage their weight. I also help them learn how to sew and how to quilt. It is my job to teach community members about hygiene and staying healthy when there is a flu outbreak. Ultimately, the most important of all the things I teach is kindness. I encourage kindness through volunteerism, kindness through selflessness—and even kindness as self-care.

I take the self-care approach especially with people who seem motivated mostly by self-interest.

How do I teach cynics all the reasons they should be kind? Through research-based information, of course! My mission, both personally and professionally, is to disseminate research that will improve people’s lives. When I discovered findings on the health benefits of being kind, I couldn’t share the information fast enough. I finally had solid reasons why everyone—even my cynics—should be kind.

For example, people who volunteer to help others typically have fewer aches and pains, and they have a 56% chance of living longer.

Here are some other things that kind action does for you:

  • It releases oxytocin, a hormone known to lower blood pressure and increase empathy. (Scientific American magazine calls oxytocin “nature’s love glue.”)
  • It stimulates the production of serotonin, a chemical that heals wounds, helps you feel calm, and increases happiness.
  • It boosts your energy.
  • It increases your sense of self-worth.
  • It lowers stress and anxiety.

So get out there and lower your blood pressure! Help yourself live a little longer! Be kind to others for your own good! For more on the health benefits of being kind, check out Random Acts of Kindness.

Warning: As confirmed by the research, kindness is contagious. Be kind only if you’re prepared to pass on the consequences to everyone around you.

—Angie

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