Kindness: A Tool to Help Others

Getting through medical care can be a tough challenge for many individuals. The many scenarios that play out in treatment centers for addiction and other medical facilities can be upsetting and overwhelming. As a result, it is vital to understand how kindness can help individuals in these settings.

Kindness Is More Than Being Nice

People often make the mistake of thinking that being nice is the same thing as being kind. A nice person behaves in a socially-acceptable way; a kind person goes out of their way to help others for no personal gain. Studies have found that kindness:

  • Helps manage pain by releasing endorphin chemicals
  • Decreases stress by removing cortisol from the body
  • Lowers symptoms of anxiety and depression
  • Produces positive blood pressure benefits

The same studies have also found that kindness is inherent in everyone. People must be taught how to be kind and proactively utilize various techniques. It is crucial to understand how to master these skills.

Ways to Enhance Kindness

Learning how to be kind is all about mastering the art of empathy. All intelligent creatures are capable of empathy – even dogs and cats show signs of this skill. Genuine kindness requires practicing several steps that make your compassion stronger.

  • Treat others as you want to be treated
    The Golden Rule is still a good way to master kindness. When you put yourself in other people’s shoes, it’s easier to empathize with them.
  • Learn more about a person
    Everyone has good and bad traits. Learn as much as you can about these facets to become more in-tune with an individual.
  • Understand why you judge
    Sometimes people are judgmental because they see something in a person they don’t like in themselves. If you stop judging, may become kinder.
  • Love yourself
    Some people struggle to empathize because they don’t have much love for themselves or for others. Forgive yourself and others to make your life better.

It’s essential to emphasize the art of extreme forgiveness when learning how to become kind. You should forgive people for anything that they have done wrong to you or others. Holding onto a grudge makes kindness impossible and poisons your heart. Let go of the things that anger you and you’ll find it easier to exercise your kindness in a more efficient and giving manner.

Using These Skills in a Recovery Setting

Although kindness is a skill that anyone can use throughout their life to enhance their relationships, using it in a recovery setting is even more critical. Those who are undergoing medical treatment – including drug rehab and other care situations – need people to be kind to them.

Showing kindness can be simpler for caregivers if they follow these steps:

  • Smile
    A simple smile is contagious and is often all that a person needs to focus a bit more firmly on their recovery and find happiness when their treatment becomes demanding or painful.
  • Remain open
    Kindness requires staying open about a person’s past and not judging them based on what they were or what they did.
  • Do small things
    You don’t have to do major life-changing things to be kind. Often, something as simple as acknowledging a person’s birthday or sitting and talking with them for a few minutes is enough.
  • Feel kindness
    Pretending to be kind is a mistake many people make. You can’t “fake it till you make it” with kindness. Instead, be honest and true. You’ll be surprised how much giving is in the hearts of most people if they let it grow there.

Caregivers who practice genuine kindness and humility can ensure that people going through a challenging treatment process are more content and prepared. While kindness may not cure diseases or provide lifelong changes, it may put a smile on someone’s face and make them feel appreciated by those working so hard to help them recover from health issues.

 

Sources:
dartmouth.edu
healthdirect.gov.au
ncbi.nlm.nih.gov
ncbi.nlm.nih.gov
civilservicelocal.blog.gov.uk
wigan.gov.uk

Patrick Bailey
Patrick Bailey is a professional writer mainly in the fields of mental health, addiction and living in recovery. He attempts to stay on top of the latest news in the addiction and mental health worlds and enjoys writing about these topics to break the stigma associated with them. You can follow Patrick on his website, Twitter or LinkedIn.

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