THE BLOG

Kindness: An International Value

24/06/2014 17:30 BST | Updated 23/08/2014 10:59 BST

In a world where conflict and anti-social behaviour dominate the headlines, it is ever more important to be reminded of the kindness going on around us. If opposing parties in war torn countries, like those in the Middle East present, considered addressing matters using kindness as their foundation to include understanding and consideration into decision-making, perhaps the result would be very different.

From time to time we are warmed by a story such as the recent press for Stephen Sutton, a teenager diagnosed with terminal cancer who spent his final years raising funds and awareness for charity. When we hear an uplifting story like this involving kindness, the positivity fuels us and we can feel the effects pass onto anyone who hears about it.

I am a big believer in kindness and the power it has to strengthen existing bonds we have with family and friends but also to unite strangers through a value that can be included in every aspect of life. Kind acts do not have to be newsworthy to involve a positive chain and this effect is often present in everyday kindness we see and do like helping a stranger carry their luggage upstairs. Many good deeds we do are subconscious but in an increasingly busy and fast paced world, sometimes I feel the need to make a conscious decision to do a kind act. Being kind doesn't have to be time consuming or big such as donating part of your liver to a stranger, 'lifestyle' kindness is just as valuable to society. A warm smile when you hold the door open for someone or buying lunch for your colleague may be more powerful than you realise.

One simple act of kindness I like to do is to give an all day train ticket I no longer need to someone waiting in the queue. Even though this is a small act the recipient is often surprised and very grateful for you taking the time to seek out somebody in need of a ticket. By the look on their faces, I like to think that these individuals pass on this kindness to others, perhaps giving up their seat on the train or giving some loose change to a busker. Perhaps somebody else sees them giving money to someone in need and is inspired to give blood. A wave of kindness is started from any kind deed, even if it is just a ripple in an ocean it is having an impact on someone's day it may just be someone whose life is turned around. I walk away feeling happy and in this positive mood likely carry on doing subconscious kind acts for the rest of the day.

We live in a nation where kind acts are happening every minute of the day and we should celebrate the value of kindness. It is vital for people to hear about the wonderful deeds going on around the world. Kindness is an essential injection of positivity that connects all cultures, religions and backgrounds.

Georgina Jones

Kindness UK