Dear IJAM Men, Women and Humans
1. Your brain’s chemicals change
If you’ve ever done something kind for someone else, you probably know that euphoric feeling you get afterward. There’s actually a name for that, it’s called a “helper’s high.” Research shows that when you help someone, there’s a process that happens in your brain that releases serotonin, dopamine, and oxytocin – the ‘feel-good’ chemicals. The reward center of your brain is kick-started and you get a rush of endorphins, making you feel happier.
2. You can give in so many different ways
Acts of kindness can sometimes mean giving your time and money – and that can steer a lot of people away. But one study found that acts of kindness don’t need to include face-to-face interactions or monetary donations at all. While those larger actions can still have their own unique benefits, you’re still improving your mental health by just calling someone you love or saying ‘thank you’ to a stranger.
3. Kindness builds on itself
If you think of compassion like a muscle, every time you do something for someone else, that stretches the muscle a little bit more, and acts of kindness get easier. Science shows that it can actually become an instinct to respond to others in a helpful, kind and compassionate way. So you start to reap the benefits of kindness more often, with less effort.
4. It decreases stress
Studies have found that people who show kindness and concern for others had a 23% lower level of cortisol – the stress hormone – compared to the average population. You’ve got a natural stress-reliever, just by showing compassion for someone else.
5. It changes how you view yourself
Studies show that random acts of kindness can also improve your feelings of self-esteem and self-worth. Some people also reported a stronger sense of meaning and purpose after acting out of compassion.
6. It gets you out of your own head
If only for that one selfless moment, your mind isn’t worried, stressed, sad, angry – whatever it may be. Instead, you’re focused on what you’re doing for someone else. In those minutes, your brain will be thinking about the good things that you are doing for something outside of yourself and the connection that you’re making with them.
7. The good stuff starts immediately
This isn’t one of those things where you have to put in serious effort before you see results. Paying it forward can benefit you the second you act with compassion. You’ll start to feel better instantaneously.
Remember be kind to yourself.
Please donate to our charity by going to imjustaman.com.au/donate
Dr. Jim, Anna and TEAM IJAM
Suicide can be Prevented, find out how you can increase your awareness, get involved and reduce alarming suicide rates affecting all Australians TODAY!
The objective to inspire others to join in a glittering night of recognition when we can raise our glasses and lift our minds to pay respect to all the men who have killed themselves or tried.