Light Up Your Brain!
Get your new year off to a good start. Go for a walk and share some well wishes.
Offer a secret or undercover "well-wish" to those that you pass by. This is a simple phrase of loving-kindness in your head, such as “May you have a peaceful day.” Or, how about “Have a healthy and happy day/New Year!” Move onto the next person you see and repeat. Can you share five well-wishes each day? Allow yourself to enjoy the practice of sharing stealth kindness, or dropping “kindness bombs," on the other people you see. You are sure to find your mood lifting as you offer your stealth well-wishes. You can also try this at the grocery store or at work, walking down the hallway.
Did you know that kindness creates positive changes in the brain? It boosts the chemicals serotonin and dopamine. And, endorphins can be released. These neurotransmitters in the brain give you feelings of satisfaction and well-being. They cause the pleasure/reward center of your brain to light up. Regularly performing kindness behaviors improves mood and can enhance thinking skills such as creativity and flexibility. Research has shown that “agents” or givers of kindness demonstrate increases in self-esteem, empathy, and compassion. They also become more resilient, both psychologically and physically. Important physiological impacts include decreased blood pressure and decreased cortisol (i.e. Post, 2005; Mayo Clinic 2020).
And, kindness is a two-for!! It has benefits both the giver and the receiver. So light up your brain while wishing someone else well. Let’s get our new year off to a great start!
Happy New Year to you…. We wish you a healthy and bright brain in 2023!
Author: Karin H. Spencer, EdD, NCPT
Thanks for visiting the Uplift Blog! I'm an educator, Pilates enthusiast (NCPT), reflective practitioner and Ironman triathlete. I love helping others discover their joy and confidence as movers. I support others in making lifestyle changes to improve health and well-being. As a life-long educator, I am especially committed to joining together with teachers to uplift each other.