We read about it, consistently rank it as one of the most important human attributes and often admire it in others. Kindness. A word definitely worthy of attention because it’s powerful – positive and contagious. It has profound benefits.
Monday November 13 was World Kindness Day. This was a terrific opportunity for us to take a moment to remember how important it is to be empathetic, understanding and to put differences aside to prioritise peace. It was a way to celebrate one another, all that we’re grateful for and to continue striving for constructive interactions.
As a boost to our wellbeing, we know that it feels very gratifying to be intentionally kind. It helps us feel connected to others and it boosts our physical and mental health. Wellbeing can make us feel as if we have a sense of purpose, that we matter and are able to make a difference.
There are many ways to be kind and compassionate when someone needs help. Here are suggestions from The Art of Kindness Mayo Clinic :
- Listening rather than giving advice
- Pointing out strengths to encourage feelings of positivity.
- Helping them feel they have hope.
- Noticing and supporting positive changes they make.
- Supporting them to solve problems.
- Helping them to reduce stress.
- Lending a hand with practical things, like going to appointments
At ISWA, we want our students to reap the limitless benefits of being empathetic and compassionate. We want them to readily look outside themselves and their own needs to reflect upon how very fortunate they are, especially in contrast to so many others. There are hundreds of opportunities throughout each day to recognise or spot kindness in others and to be thankful for belonging to our community. Gratitude and kindness are potent allies!
Below are some examples of how Jasmine Grundy and Cayley Benedict’s Year 1 students encapsulated World Kindness Day and helped make it visible. Special mention is owed to Kyra Kapoor, Isabel Leong and Laura Werschlan and look out for the mini poster outlining ‘7 Ways to Make Kindness the Norm’.
Christine Rowlands, School Councilor
Government of Western Australia 2022, World Kindness Day – 13 November 2022, Mental Health Commission – Western Australia. https://www.mhc.wa.gov.au/about-us/news-and-media/news-updates/world-kindness-day/
Random Acts of Kindness Foundation 2019, Random Acts of Kindness, Random Acts of Kindness. https://www.randomactsofkindness.org/
Converge International 2022, The why of kind — how kindness can help our mental health, Converge International. https://convergeinternational.com.au/resources/the-why-of-kind-how-kindness-can-help-our-mental-health/