brightly painted rocks with sayings Join Facilitator Joanne Wade for a FamiliesConnect workshop May 18 as we explore the topic of kindness. Joanne asks that those attending conduct the experiment explained below, in preparation for the workshop.

Kindness is an under-rated quality. It seems simple enough, but is actually much more involved and more complex than you can imagine. Kindness is more than deeds. It is an attitude, an expression,  a look, a touch. It is anything that lifts a person.

It seems obvious enough that an act of kindness helps the recipient, but what effect does it have on the person giving the kindness? What happens in the brain when we do a kind deed?

Would you like to participate in a kindness experiment? Joanne asks all participants in the workshop to conduct this experiment before May 18, but it’s a useful test for any of us, any time, to practice and reflect on.

Step #1 Choose 2 -3 acts of kindness you would like to try and put an x beside them.

Give someone a compliment

Thank someone for something they did

Help someone with a task at hand

Invite someone to sit with you at lunch or pay for their lunch

Ask a shut-in if they would like a visit and share tea with them.

Send a thinking-of-you card.

Step #2 Place an x next to your selection. spend some time reflecting on what you expect. Will being kind make you happy? Will it make you more happy, make you less happy or make no difference?

Step #3 Plan your experiment. When and where will you do this act of kindness?

Who will you do this act of kindness for? What tools or materials will be needed?

Step #4 After you complete your kind acts, analyze your data. Did doing kind acts make you happy? Did it make the other person happy? Which kind act made you feel the happiest? Why do you think that was the case?

It has been written that “the highest form of wisdom is kindness”. We will talk about that idea at the workshop on May 18 – hope you can join us!