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Kindness is thriving

Carers have shown that kindness is thrives in the Mobilise Community. We've pulled together some of the many benefits of kindness, plus an insight into just a few of the kind deeds our community have been involved with.

Why not pop a kind deed on your 'to-do' list every day. We promise it doesn't feel like work - but will bring a smile to your face.

Illustration of two friends chatting at a park. The friend on the left is on a wheelchair, whilst the other friend is standing next to her dog.

The benefits of being kind

When so much is out of our control as a carer, "giving kindness" is something completely within our control. And what is more, we directly benefit too!

Aside from just being a lovely thing to do, being kind has proven benefits for our mental health.

"Studies have found that being kind is linked to increased feelings of happiness, wellbeing, and life satisfaction" - Mental health org
"Giving also connects us to others, creating stronger communities and helping to build a happier society for everyone. And it's not all about money - we can also give our time, ideas and energy." - Action for Happiness

Kindness seems to be one of those magic things, the more we use it the more there is available. Even in the busiest of times, for some, kindness has thrived. It has been really uplifting to take a moment to notice it.

What does kindness look like?

Kind deeds can vary in size, but all bring benefits to both the person receiving and the person giving kindness. Examples can include:

  • Thanking someone for their help and sharing what it means to us

  • Volunteering with a charity (even as a one-off!)

  • Making the person we care for a cup of tea in bed

  • Expressing forgiveness

  • Changing and freshening the bedsheets

  • Making our teenager's bed or clearing the cups from their bedroom!

  • Running a bath for the person we care for

  • Being aware and inclusive of those around us

  • Asking our family or friends if they need something from the grocery store

Carers and their families caught in the act of kindness

We thought it would be inspiring to both honour and share a few of the kind deeds we have witnessed in the Mobilise Community.

1. Setting up a scheme to help others

One carer initiated a scheme with a local charity during lockdown.

The organisation helped vulnerable residents, elderly and disabled.

A great idea she suggested was to write letters to people who could not participate, such as those who couldn't benefit from telephone befriending services.

"I write to a lady who is deaf and cannot be befriended via phone. I felt my own experience of health disability and being a carer helped me to recognise what isolation feels like, and show kindness to initiate this. The scheme is growing locally."

But the world doesn't need to be in lockdown for us to get creative and show acts of kindness. We really can come up with anything we want! For example, it could be as simple as setting up a group chat with family and friends who have a shared interest to bring smiles to others.

2. Reaching out to neighbours

"This last week my son showed kindness to a local neighbour resident here who we knew nothing about, but appears very shy and on her own in the NHS clap for carers nights. He wanted us to drop her a card and he offered to bake for her."

Carers in the Mobilise Community also showed kindness to neighbours, adding their shopping to their own online shop, baking cakes, dropping off meals and treats. Others have been able to buy extra food items to donate to the food bank.

3. Visit the Random Acts of Kindness website

There really is no end to random acts of kindness. Visit the Random Acts of Kindness website which has a kindness calendar with daily ideas, and lots of fun resources for both adults and kids, some of which we can add to our 'to-do' list. And with that, we may get a little boost in the process too!

What do random acts of kindness feel like to us?

From being made a cup of tea, handmade cards, gifts of plants, to a call from friends, family or a voluntary organisation - we are noticing kindness all around us.

One of our favourite examples was one of our cuppa regulars who had been given a second hand (but good condition) kitchen from their next door neighbours!

And how are we showing kindness to ourselves?

Here's a little list of ways carers are finding to be kind to themselves - there might be something new here to try:

1. Something frivolous

A cheeky can of cocktail with the supermarket shop, in the fridge ready for later; buying a new notebook (I’m sure it’s not just me that gets joy from stationery!) and chocolate cake

2. Meet up with a friend or family member that we have been missing

This may not always be possible with our limited time. Perhaps we can arrange a video call that works for both.

3. A takeaway coffee

Yes, coffee from our kitchen would mean we get to save money. But an odd takeaway coffee here and there won't hurt - plus the bonus of stepping out for a little while for fresh air.

4. Words of kindness to ourselves

Take each day as it comes - not every day will be one where we tick things off and achieve something - that is ok. Let other people be kind to you. Take the time to tell ourselves “I am alright, I am enough”. Rather than comparing ourselves to others, or the expectations that others have on us. It might be that journalling is one way for us to express our inner thoughts.

5. Things to add to our weekly routine

  • A nice long bath

  • Take a quick stroll outside more

  • A bit more structure about when people can call me (mastering the art of setting boundaries)

  • Spending time in the garden (maybe even planting something)

  • A yoga session or playing some sports

  • Diving into a new book

What else would you add? We would love to hear more carer kindness stories over in the Mobilise Community or in our virtual cuppas! There are so many uplifts for us to share. What act of kindness have you received or given lately?

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