Geriatrician, Hospitalist, Patient Advocate, Healthcare Educator

Thoughtfulness and Your Health

Photo by Kelly Sikkema

“Be Somebody Who Makes Everybody Feel Like A Somebody” - Brad Montague

August 28th is National Thoughtful Day. This day brings to attention the needs and feelings of our loved ones. Being thoughtful and kind to those around us not only gives them a “pick me up” and happiness but also has health benefits for us.

“Kind words can be short and easy to speak but their echoes are truly endless” - Mother Teresa

Benefits of being thoughtful:

We feel better about ourselves and happier because of the release of “feel good chemicals”

  • Release oxytocin which in turn is a hormone which releases nitric oxide, a chemical which dilates blood vessels and helps in lowering blood pressure
  • Releases dopamine which helps in positive thinking
  • Boosts your serotonin, a neurotransmitter, which causes you a feeling of well-being and satisfaction

Bringing a smile to someone’s face will bring a smile to yours because laughter is contagious

Eases anxiety and reduces stress

Helps you connect better with people

  • Creates better relationships at work and home and reduce stress
  • Helps to deal with difficult people (you being kind makes it hard for others to be anything but kind back)

Improve our views about life in general, the community, and the world

Improves our emotional well-being and longevity

Kindness tends to come back around

  • Your act of thoughtfulness is remembered and also out there for everybody and the universe, it will find a way to come back in some way

Some ways to be thoughtful:

  • Reach out to a loved one you have not spoken to for a while
  • Help a neighbor, friend, or parent out with cleaning, baby-sitting, lawn mowing, snow shoveling
  • Drop off lunch or get flowers for someone
  • Thank people
  • Wish someone a good morning or ask how there day is going
  • Donate to library or good will
  • Volunteer
  • Pass on a book for another to read
  • Pay it forward-pay small acts of kindness forward

“Do things for people not because of who they are or what they do in return, but because of who you are” - Harold S. Kushner