Trigger warning: this piece discusses themes of anxiety.
There has been a lot of negativity going on across the world. It can feel scary. It might make you angry. It might create anxiety. I absolutely understand all of these feelings and want you to know that any of these, or others, are valid.
We keep hearing about the bad and, while yes it's happening, if you look a bit closer, there's also a lot of good. For example, thanks to many of you from NZ, Voices of Hope have received over 3000 cards to send to the older generation. This will mean so much to all those receiving cards - and that’s all because there is GOOD in the world.
So, for now, instead of focusing on the scary and upsetting things that are happening, make a conscious effort to look for the good. Look for the news that brings you joy, not sadness. Be kind wherever you go as you never know what kind of impact that may have on someone. Below, I’ve put together a list of ways that you can start spreading more kindness.
How to spread kindness
Compliment someone - a friend, colleague, family member, or even a stranger! I've found that complimenting others is always appreciated and, in doing so, makes us feel good to make someone else feel good.
Educate yourself - I'm not saying to go doom-scrolling and look at the awful things that are happening! But it's always great to be educated, to learn about people who might be different from yourself and how you can help them.
Listen - this is probably similar to educating yourself, but listening is probably one of the simplest ways to spread kindness. If someone is having a tough time, simply letting them know that you’re there and willing to listen can help hugely.
Random acts of kindness - this could be something such as paying for the next person’s coffee at your local cafe, writing someone a ‘thinking of you’ card, donating clothing or items you don’t use anymore, or volunteering at a rescue - there are lots of options! It doesn’t have to cost you any money, any small bit of kindness counts and can brighten someone else’s day.
Show kindness to yourself - it’s easy to forget that you need to show kindness to yourself, too. If things are tough, take some time out for self-care. Do something that will make you happy, whatever that may be.
With that, spread kindness! As I’ve said, you never know how much this will impact someone and could turn their whole day around.
Voices of Hope wants you to know that you do not have to do this alone. Click here to ‘find help’ - it’s not weak to speak!