Wouldn’t the world be a much happier place if we were all kinder to one another?
But let’s be real—sometimes, life gets so busy and chaotic that we forget to help others and brighten their day!
If you’re searching for ways to be kinder, you’re in luck.
In this article, I’ll show you ten simple ways to get you living life with a softer and kinder outlook every day!
Let’s dive in:
1) Appreciate the small things
One of the best ways to be kinder is to show gratitude even for the tiniest things.
Go ahead and thank the people who do things that make your life easier or put a smile on your face. You’ll definitely make them feel appreciated and cared for.
Stop and smell the flowers—it may sound like a cliché, but really, it does wonders for your mental health and makes you feel softer and kinder toward others.
Taking time to notice and be thankful for the simple joys you encounter gives you a more positive outlook in life and makes you more inclined to do acts of kindness for others.
2) Use positive language and avoid criticizing people
You know the saying, “The tongue has no bones, but it is strong enough to break a heart?”
That’s a powerful reminder for us to be careful with our words.
You might think they’re just words—strings of letters that disappear in the air—but they can hurt someone deeply if you’re not careful.
It’s always wise to think before you speak. Make it a point to use encouraging words that lift the spirit.
And remember to pay compliments! Look for things to like about someone and tell them about it.
Genuine compliments are just as powerful as hurtful words—they can even carry people through rough patches!
I remember when someone told me that I’m a great listener. I’m not going to lie—that comment really stuck with me and lifted me up (and it still does!) whenever I feel down about myself.
That’s not to say we should avoid criticizing people. I understand that sometimes we need to point out areas of improvement to help others do better.
But the key is to say it gently and thoughtfully. That way, it’s received as an act of kindness instead of a put-down.
3) Let go of grudges and practice forgiveness
I know forgiving is easier said than done. When people hurt us, it can be incredibly hard to get past it.
But guess what? Forgiveness is a form of kindness. Not just to the one who hurt you, but also to yourself!
You’ll have peace of mind and live in a place of love instead of anger.
Now, you might think that forgiveness is a sign of weakness.
On the contrary, it’s a sign of strength, just like kindness is.
Imagine how hard it is to let a grudge go, especially one you’ve held onto for years…surely, you’ll agree that it’s not for the faint-hearted.
But—it’s something you need to do if you want to be a kinder person.
And who knows, your very act of forgiveness could even teach the other person how to be kind!
4) Live with mindfulness and intention
We live in a world that’s full of noise and stress. Many of our interactions today are hurried and distracted.
With the fast pace of life today, it can be challenging to take a moment to be kind.
In fact, we might even find it hard to notice when someone needs help or attention.
That’s why it’s important to live with mindfulness and intention.
Slow down and just be present—that alone is an act that can help you be a kinder person.
Mindfulness lets you see the details that often go unnoticed in the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
You can spot more easily when someone needs support and respond with kindness and compassion.
Plus, when you live in the moment, your self-awareness improves, helping you monitor how you behave.
That sounds like a win-win situation to me!
5) Listen attentively
Part of living mindfully is listening with complete attention.
I once had a friend who constantly checked her phone every time we got together for coffee. At first, it was okay, but after a while, I felt frustrated.
I felt like she wasn’t really listening, like she was half in and out of our conversation.
Needless to say, it wasn’t a very satisfying talk.
Since then, I decided to be as present as I could for those who needed someone to talk to.
Now that I’ve experienced being ignored, I know how bad it can feel.
Sometimes, people don’t even need advice; they just need someone to listen.
Kindness can grow from such a simple habit as giving your undivided attention to someone who needs it.
6) Show empathy and put yourself in someone else’s shoes
Another quick path to a life of kindness is to practice empathy.
Empathy means treating others with respect, understanding, and compassion.
You can start by putting yourself in another person’s place.
That harried waitress who got your order wrong? She might be new to the job. Or she might be going through some personal problems and can’t focus as well as she normally does.
The point is, you don’t really know what someone else is going through.
Instead of dismissing them or jumping to conclusions or snap judgments, imagine how you would fare if you were in her place.
So, if you want to grow in kindness, empathy should be in your emotional-superpower toolbox!
7) Cultivate an attitude of generosity
Do you want to get out of your own head and start thinking about other people’s needs?
Share your blessings!
It doesn’t have to be fancy gifts or huge donations, although those are certainly nice things to share.
You can also practice generosity in other ways, such as giving the gifts of time, affection, and service.
When you live with a spirit of generosity, you infuse your life with positivity.
Because believe me, it feels so good to be able to respond to other people’s needs.
It feels awesome to be a part of the solution to another person’s problems.
And the best part is, this sense of fulfillment you feel upon giving makes you more likely to be kind and compassionate in the future.
No wonder they always say it’s better to give than to receive!
8) Don’t hesitate to help
Remember Mr. Rogers? He’s always an excellent source of wisdom when it comes to things like kindness and compassion.
There’s a saying of his that I love.
“When I was a boy, and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”
This quote really inspired me, not just to look for the helpers, but to be a helper myself.
Isn’t it comforting to know that no matter how bad things may get, there’s always someone out there who can help?
That person could be you.
So, don’t be afraid to ask people if they need some support.
And even if they’re too shy or proud to ask for help, follow your instincts…go ahead and give them a hand.
They might not even know it, but your support or assistance could be exactly what they needed.
Really, Mr. Rogers knows what’s up!
9) Be inclusive and open-minded toward others
You know what I love about meeting new people?
The sheer diversity the world has to offer.
I find it so amazing how we’re all so different yet the same at the core.
It’s true that we all have our biases, but we can overcome them as long as we stay open to new ideas and new points of view.
The more people you meet, the more it will open your mind to other ways of thinking and being.
When you can accept and respect others for who they are, no matter how different they are from you, you’re on your way to being kinder.
How does smiling make me a kinder person, you might ask?
Well, here’s the good news—smiling can improve your mood and make you feel more positive, even if you were initially feeling crappy.
This is the perfect example of “fake it till you make it.”
Studies show that smiling can trick your brain into happiness. And once you’re in a better mood, you’ll find it easier to respond to others warmly.
Of course, smiling alone won’t make you a kinder person. But it’s a great start!
Hopefully, this list has shown you how you can be kinder every day.
And if that isn’t enough, here’s some more food for thought.
Research suggests that kindness can create a virtuous cycle—doing nice things for others makes you happy, and happiness makes you kind!
Now that’s a cycle I’d love to hop on!