April 13, 2018


“The smallest act of kindness is worth more than the greatest intention.”

This week for #BORNATDAWNLIFE, we examine why kindness is essential in our current climate, how even the smallest gestures can change lives and practical ways to be compassionate.

It’s easy to believe people aren’t as nice as they used to be. The world portrayed in the news can appear dangerous and cruel and social media creates a warped view of people as narcissistic. Yet, in everyday life, people can be good and it’s never been more important to be compassionate.

Jamie Thurston is the founder of 52 Lives, a charity aiming to change someone’s life every week. It chooses a person in need and shares their story online. Spreading the word has helped build a sensory shed for a toddler in London losing their sight through to buying teeth for a man in Alabama. Jamie believes unexpected kindness goes beyond providing material things - the human connection has the most impact.

Writing for the Huffington Post, Peter Field notes that selfless acts of giving are not only emotionally uplifting for others, but ourselves as well. Research shows regular kindness has a positive effect on the brain, increases the flow of endorphins and can help us live longer. Practising the philosophy of kindness is an important part of our self-development, ’paving the way to a happy life’.

Jaime offers some simple tips on how to spread kindness:

  • Don’t underestimate the power of a kind word; tell others how much they inspire you - it might change their day.
  • If you have the means, buy an extra item at the supermarket and donate to a local food bank or pay for someone else’s coffee.
  • Donate a skill, rather than a ‘thing’ such as helping someone complete a form or mending a friend’s clothes.
  • Selflessly celebrate other people’s success, even if you’re going through a tough time - their win is not your loss. If it’s hard, consider what you could do in your own life to be happy.

In tumultuous times we tend to focus on negative things that make headlines but as 52 Lives reminds us, people are good. Good people working together can achieve amazing things.

Photo: Our new favourite print by Margo McDaid sold at the brilliant Homeplace.

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