Saturday Coffee Talk

Coffee. Photo by Jonathan Thursfield.

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Good day, TNBers!

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Did you know today is Happy World Kindness Day?

via GIPHY

Yeah, me neither. I only learned it looking for a gif to lead with and there it was on GIPHY so I looked if that was a thing for today and sure enough, November 13 is World Kindness Day.

And BAM! just like that I had something to talk about while I snorted my first cuppa joe this morning! Winning!

According to Google World Kindness Day is observed internationally and was first introduced by a group of NGOs in 1998 and “promotes the importance of being kind to each other, to yourself, and to the world” and “to help everyone understand that compassion for others is what binds us all together.”

According to Wikipedia:

World Kindness Day is an international observance on 13 November. It was introduced in 1998 by the World Kindness Movement, a coalition of nations’ kindness NGOs. It is observed in many countries, including Canada, Australia, Nigeria and the United Arab Emirates. Singapore observed the day for the first time in 2009. Italy and India also observed the day. In the UK, it is fronted by David Jamilly, who co-founded Kindness Day UK with Louise Burfitt-Dons.

Wikipedia

According to National Today dot com:

World Kindness Day is an international holiday that was formed in 1998, to promote kindness throughout the world and is observed annually on November 13 as part of the World Kindness Movement. It is observed in many countries including the United States, Canada, Japan, Australia and the U.A.E. World Kindness Day presents us with the opportunity to reflect upon one of the most important and unifying human principles. On a day devoted to the positive potential of both large and small acts of kindness, try to promote and diffuse this crucial quality that brings people of every kind together. 

National Today

Google helpfully plugged in an online parenting mag Parent Cue within this topic relating to another kindness celebration day, the National Random Acts of Kindness Day celebrated February 17, as a way to promote parenting skills to teach and instill in children the value of kindness which lead me to the “Kindness Guru”.

According to this Kindness Guru, UK’s Dr. David Hamilton, who is the author of 11 books, one published in 2017, titled, The Five Side Effects of Kindness, asserts there is scientific evidence that “can make you healthy and happier” by explaining “that kindness changes the brain, impacts the heart and immune system, is an antidote to depression, and even slows the aging process.”

So, naturally, I had to run him to ground to discover just what would make him a possible authority on such a claim. According to Hamilton’s online bio,

After completing my PhD in organic chemistry, I worked in R&D in the pharmaceutical industry, developing drugs for cardiovascular disease and cancer. Inspired by the placebo effect, and how some people’s conditions would improve because they believed a placebo was a real drug, I left the industry to write books and educate people in how they can harness their mind and emotions to improve their mental and physical health.

Dr. David R. Hamilton

Not too shabby as creds go. It is a plausible theory. I could see how it could effect the endorphins. Of course, mental health isn’t always *just* a state of mind, but can also be a physiological state as well. Our bodies, and especially our brains, are run on more than thinking power alone. Many factors will play into one’s mental health.

I would call this a tool for the quiver, and as tools go, I have seen the effects of what a smile or a nod or a random “hi” to a random person crossing my path in say, a grocery isle, can do. I cannot remember a time I’ve done it that it doesn’t elicit a response in return. One effect I’ve noticed is, it gets me out of my own head. And maybe, even if only for a minute or two, it gets the other person out of their head as well, that random act could help someone else while it could also benefit me, I think that could be a good thing. It surely can’t hurt.

Parent Cue lists 25 ways we can celebrate kindness for National Random Acts of Kindness Day, and although this is World Kindness Day, we can surely let the two merge.

  1. Compliment at least 5 people. (Be original)
  2. Let the person in line behind you go ahead of you.
  3. Leave happy notes around town.
  4. Babysit for a single mom for free.
  5. Sit next to someone who is sitting alone at lunch.
  6. Help an elderly neighbor take out the trash or mow their lawn.
  7. Write your siblings a note about how much you appreciate them.
  8. Take the security guard a hot cup of coffee.
  9. Leave your server a gigantic tip (especially if they weren’t great at it).
  10. Bring a box of doughnuts to the custodians at school or work.
  11. Leave a thank you note in the mailbox addressed to the mailman.
  12.  Send a card to someone serving in the military.
  13. Hold the door open for someone.
  14. Do a chore without being asked.
  15. Give a fancy chocolate bar to the bus driver.
  16. Bake your favorite cookies for a neighbor.
  17. Donate warm coats or blankets to the homeless shelter.
  18. Call the grandparents.
  19. Surprise some friends with dinner. (Drop it off, don’t stay.)
  20. Find someone who looks like they’ve had a bad day and give them a gift card. ($5 for coffee or ice-cream would make anyone’s day!)
  21. Go through the drive-thru and pay for the car behind you.
  22. Clean up the classroom for your teacher.
  23. Donate gently used toys to a charity.
  24. Put together and give away homeless bags.
  25. Smile at everyone you see.

See you tomorrow!


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