In today’s world, it can be difficult to remain positive and kind when there’s so much negativity and division. But the truth is, kindness is an incredibly powerful force that can make a real difference in the world.
That’s why I’m excited to share with you the top 10 habits of genuinely kind people. These habits are simple yet effective, and they can help you build stronger, more meaningful relationships.
Best of all, they can help you have a more positive outlook on life, filling you up so you can keep on being the generous person you are. It’s a lovely cycle, isn’t it?
So let’s dive in and explore these habits in more detail!
1) Genuinely kind people really listen
With so many distractions around us these days, I really notice when someone gives me their full attention. It’s so rare, and it makes me feel so special.
Genuinely kind people make a habit of actively listening to others. They’re all ears and know how to listen with an open mind, without interrupting or judging (more on that later).
I think that this ability to listen is such a gift and definitely points to a big heart. When I talk to a kind person, I feel like I’m the only person in the world who matters at that moment. They are fully engaged and ask thoughtful questions.
And you know what? It’s not just that they’re good listeners; it’s that they genuinely care about what you have to say.
It helps create a safe and trusting environment, where people feel heard and understood.
2) They do not pass judgment
Remember the part where I said kind people listen without judgment? That’s absolutely true.
See, someone might listen to you and be all nice and attentive outwardly. But you have no idea that they’ve formed all sorts of opinions about you in their minds.
But truly kind people don’t do that. They are open-minded and don’t judge others based on their appearance, background, or beliefs.
Sure, they might have some reservations about what you’re saying, especially if it’s a controversial topic. But they won’t go so far as to make judgments or assumptions about you.
They’ll simply treat you with respect, even if they disagree with what you’re saying.
You know why? Because they understand that everyone’s unique – we all have differences. And they accept those differences without criticism or negativity. That really is a breath of fresh air in today’s divisive atmosphere!
3) They use their words wisely
One of my old bosses was an ace at communication. She had the most amazing way of expressing herself in a kind and compassionate way.
Even when I messed up, she never made me feel ashamed or embarrassed. Instead, she would ask me what was going on so we could work through the issues together.
Whenever she had to give me feedback, I never felt belittled. On the contrary, I actually felt uplifted and supported; I just knew that she wanted me to be the best I could be. I knew that she could see my potential and wanted me to go places.
I guess it boils down to this – genuinely kind people can communicate their thoughts and feelings in a clear and respectful way.
Which leads me to my next point…
4) They practice empathy
See, one of the secrets to good communication and being non-judgmental is the ability to empathize.
Are you able to put yourself in other people’s shoes? Do you take the time to truly see others?
That’s what genuinely kind people can do. When you’re talking to one, you just feel like they really understand where you’re coming from.
It’s like they have this innate ability to connect with others on a deep emotional level.
I remember when I once volunteered at a local homeless shelter. There was this woman named Kathryn, who could approach anyone and strike up a conversation. She would listen to stories of people struggling with addiction and how it cost them everything.
Instead of dismissing them or backing away, Kathryn would share her own struggles and reassure them that they weren’t alone. That, to me, spoke volumes about her big heart and capacity to comfort people.
True enough, everyone she spoke to would come away looking more comforted and hopeful.
5) They choose to think the best of people
The great thing about empathy is that it allows you to think the best of people. And that’s exactly what genuinely kind people do.
Have you ever had a time when someone came to you with some juicy gossip? I bet it felt so tempting to engage, right?
But genuinely kind people don’t do that because they know that gossip is hurtful. They can put themselves in the shoes of the person being talked about and imagine how awful it feels to be the subject of gossip.
So no matter what others say, they’d rather think the best of the person in question.
6) They are quick to forgive people
And if they’ve been on the receiving end of hurtful behavior? Well, they’ll find a way to overcome this pain and forgive the ones who hurt them.
That really is a tall order, but I guess that’s the advantage of having a huge, golden heart.
I guess it comes down once again to the fact that they understand human nature well. They get that people make mistakes and that holding onto anger and resentment just isn’t worth it.
And again, that habit of being empathetic and choosing to think the best of people comes into play here.
I remember when my mom, who’s one of the kindest, kindest creatures to walk the earth, talked about someone who had treated her horribly.
She said, “I do feel hurt, but I also feel bad for him. He must be going through such stress and pain himself to lash out at me like that.”
I mean, I definitely rolled my eyes at the time, but a part of me was secretly in awe of her capacity to understand and forgive!
7) They are honest and authentic
Now, all that talk about empathy and forgiveness…don’t take that to mean that genuinely kind people are doormats.
Here’s the deal: Being kind doesn’t mean that you’re weak or you’ll let other people walk all over you.
In fact, kind people can speak up and tell you the truth when you need to hear it. They don’t shy away from tough love – but in their case, they still manage to express this in a compassionate way.
You see, for genuinely kind people, honesty and authenticity are two core values they hold dear. Their niceness isn’t fake; it really comes from the heart. And when they do need to be tough, they do it from a place of love.
Remember that boss I told you about earlier? She was such a great example of this. Yes, she was indeed compassionate, but that doesn’t mean she’d keep quiet when you’re doing something wrong.
No, she would give her honest feedback to help us improve and become better people.
So make no mistake – genuinely kind people won’t fake things just to keep the peace or to make you happy.
They’ll tell you what needs to change because, for them, kindness is not about making sure everything’s peaceful. It’s about being honest to help you do better and grow.
I guess that’s why it’s easy to trust them!
8) They always keep their word
Speaking of trust, here’s one more habit that genuinely kind people do – they treat their word as gold.
With earnest hearts like theirs, they don’t say things lightly. They say what they mean and mean what they say!
So, if they say they’ll be there, believe me, they will show up.
They know that keeping their word is essential to building trust. Whether it’s a small favor for a friend or a major commitment for a work project, they honor their commitments.
The downside of that (or upside, depending on how you look at it) is that they won’t say yes to everything. They’re very clear on their boundaries, and make sure they only commit to what they can follow through on.
9) They practice gratitude
Ah, gratitude. So much potential for happiness packed in one word.
Genuinely kind people are some of the most grateful people out there. They just have this incredible ability to find joy in even the smallest things in life.
And you know what? Even when they don’t feel like it (because of course, they’re still human and they naturally experience disappointment just like everyone else), they still actively practice gratitude!
What does that mean?
It means taking the time to reflect on the things they’re thankful for and expressing their gratitude to others in thoughtful ways.
The best thing about gratitude is that it’s contagious. You just can’t help feeling kind and thankful yourself when you see someone being grateful!
10) They give without expecting anything in return
I guess going through life with a grateful heart naturally inclines you to be generous yourself.
In the wise words of American monk David Steindl-Rast, “The more grateful we are, the more generous we become. The more generous we become, the more we learn to appreciate and value what we have.”
Isn’t that a beautiful cycle?
Perhaps that’s why genuinely kind people are selfless – they’re always willing to lend a helping hand or go out of their way to make someone else’s day a little bit better.
In fact, doing acts of kindness is so ingrained in them that they just do it naturally.
So if you want to start cultivating genuine kindness, do as they do – perform an act of kindness daily. You’ll be amazed at how much lighter and more joyful you’ll feel!