Small Gestures Go a Long Way

Studies and new analysis reveal that witnessing goodness inspires us to be kind. When we see or hear about people acting kindly or helpful, we are inspired to do the same. Even the smallest gesture can have a meaningful ripple and go a long way.

Words of Kindness to Use Everyday

In Working Knowledge, published by Harvard Business School, researcher, professor, and author Boris Groysberg and journalist Susan Seligson identified seven simple phrases we can use to communicate kindness:

  1. “I hear you.”
  2. “Are you okay?”
  3. “What can we/I do to help?”
  4. “How are you managing these days?”
  5. “I’m here for you.”
  6. “I know you’re doing the best you can.”
  7. “Thank you.”

These words go a long way to create kind organizations and communities. They help to satisfy your need for love and belonging, and create unity. That’s why kindness is most beneficial as a daily practice.

Daily Kindness Practices

You see, kindness in the community sustains your capacity to thrive. The amazing people I work with understand this: they expand their kindness beyond their immediate circle (family, co-workers, organization) and give freely to their greater community. You can do this too through:

  1. Service: Reaching out to those around you. Certain times of year, generosity and giving are top of mind. Consider ways you can extend kindness beyond the holiday seasons to make it a daily practice.
  2. Responsibility: Taking positive action wherever you are. Don’t give in to hopelessness, cynicism, or blame shifting. Even the smallest deed can have a positive impact.
  3. Integrity: Doing the right thing. Acknowledge the hurdles, and work to overcome them.
  4. Tolerance: Honoring the strength in diversity. Point out the goodness and kindness in your community.

Sustaining kindness throughout the year is critical for your employees, your organization, and your community. Fortunately, kindness is contagious.

Tara Cousineau, Ph.D., author of The Kindness Cure (New Harbinger Publications, 2018), writes that “how we learn from our past and envision our future depends on how we choose to live in the present moment.” I have found this to be true. When kindness is my north star, compassion, generosity, and forgiveness become natural and spread exponentially.

What about you? What has been your experience expanding kindness to your team, organization, or community? I’d love to hear from you. You can reach me here and on LinkedIn.