Kindness Contagion: One Act Of Kindness Inspiring Many More

in psychology •  2 years ago  (edited)

When people witness an act of kindness taking place, it is said that the action will inspire even more acts of kindness.

It's referred to by some as kindness contagion. With ease, simple acts of kindness can prompt a ripple effect and inspire further acts of kindness; spreading like a virus.

Some researchers suggest that people give because they value being a part of the group.

And there is some sense of togetherness and community when it comes to a random act of kindness that spreads to reach dozens or hundreds of people within a short amount of time. It might also be that many people are already willing to give and help others, and they're looking for the right opportunity to present itself, and so they jump at the chance when it does.

There have been various instances of this kindness contagion on display, the news has covered dozens of amazing and unexpected pay it forward sprees, where hundreds of people engage in paying it forward to a total stranger.

Just This Week..

Over 100 people at a Mc Donald's in Kentucky decided to engage in a random act of kindness and pay it forward almost 200 times (167 to be exact).

It all started when one customer wanted to pay for a father who was with his children, the occasion of course being Father's Day. When the father arrived at the window to find out about the surprise, he responded by doing the same thing for two cars behind him and many others followed in doing the same.

Sometimes these chains can get upwards of 300 or 400 people paying it forward to someone else.

It's happened in a number of food and coffee establishments like Mc Donald's, Wendy's, Starbucks, and similar places.

In one creative giving twist, a current trend in Florida that's going on right now are the pay it forward treasure hunts, where people are taking to hiding a variety of different treasures around the state. After they go out and hide a personal amount of their own money, they then post a photo on Facebook with details/hints to the hidden location and treasure. So far the group doing it has over 20,000 people (link below).

In Minnesota, the state's nurses association just recently announced that it was planning to pay off the medical debt of about 1,800 families from the area. The association allegedly partnered with a nonprofit from New York and they were able to raise the funds in order to purchase the $2.6 million debt balance (for just $28,000).

And these stories are just from this week. These pay it forward chains happen not only in the US, but there are other news stories of them taking places in other countries around the world as well.

Researchers suggest that altruistic people are going to tend to be happier in life and various studies have found that participants do reap joy and satisfaction when they engage in acts of kindness.

There are many reasons why someone might want to give to another and the benefits are clear. You never know when a small act of kindness might inspire another person, maybe an even greater act of generosity or many more small acts of kindness; with our direct actions we can inspire positive social change.

Also, giving not only to strangers, but to those who are already in our lives, can be an easy way to strengthen and build a better relationship with others. When it comes to helping the world and giving to others, sometimes it's easiest to start right where you are in helping your own friends and family. We might not feel like we can do anything to change the world when we face its overwhelming problems, but we shouldn't underestimate the positive impact that our actions could have on the lives of those who are around us.


banner thanks to @son-of-satire

Pics:
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OkClipart via clipartpanda.com/seed-clipart-seed-swap.gif
Pixabay
Fotosearch via fotosearch.com/clip-art/driving-woman.html
westex.org

Sources:
https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/kindness-contagion/
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/05/18/kindness-contagious-psych_n_7292862.html
https://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/how_our_bodies_react_human_goodness
http://www.fox5atlanta.com/news/most-popular/262619985-story
https://www.fastcompany.com/3034747/breaking-a-pay it forward-chain-isnt-being-a-cheap-bastard-its-good-economics
http://www.nbcmiami.com/news/local/Pay-It-Forward-Treasure-Hunts-Spread-Positivity-Across-Florida-429439993.html
http://www.kaaltv.com/article/stories/S4519270.shtml?cat=10728
https://www.facebook.com/floridatreasurehunts/

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There's few things as undervalued as kindness. An act of kindness is all it takes to make a moment become a told-and-retold legend. It has the power to disable potential fuses before they become full-blown arguments..

The world will always be a better place with more kindness in it. And for us, if we can find it in ourselves, that's a true treasure.

Thanks for reminding us about the power of kindness @doitvoluntarily! I hope someone shows you an act of kindness today :)

thanks for taking the time to check it out :)

Couldn't help it! Contagion hit me when I read the post's title and content ;)

Over 100 people at a Mc Donald's in Kentucky decided to engage in a random act of kindness and pay it forward almost 200 times (167 to be exact)

That's amazing! Great post.

Followed :)

I'm about this life.

There is abundant blessing associated with an act of kindness. It will be great if everyone will show kindness to his neighbour. It will make the world a better place.
Thanks for sharing @doitvoluntarily
I've always admired your content.
Following you... and pls i'll appreciate if you'll stay in touch.

thx for taking the time to check it out @mcekworo :)

You're welcome.

I'm convinced Steemit is a big time kindness breeding ground

I agree. Its a very positive, supportive environment.

They say laughter is contagious but I say every good that brings positivity to the world is contagious.

ripple effect :)

Ya it is a great analogy.

We could all do with a little more kindness!!

This world would be a better place if everyone would make random acts of kindness part of our everyday life. Great post! Upvoted

The #1 rule my wife teaches to her kindergarten class is "Always be kind to others." Acting with kindness toward another even makes conflict easier. Thanks for sharing!

love it!

Thanks for sharing this as I believe it is true! I've experience this in my own life, too! @doitvoluntarily

thanks :)

You're welcome, @doitvoluntarily

I usually pay for a coffee for the person behind me at the Starbucks drive thru. It was once done for me and I remember how happy I felt so now I just pay it forward!

I totally agree. You can make yourself happy by making others happy :)

Wow 167 people. I've actually been apart of a couple of these pay it forward instances at fast food joints, and Starbucks. It feels good to pay for someone else, although it doesn't hurt when someone else pays for your stuff as well.

It doesn't surprise me that people gain joy from this act.

ok i will! thx :)

great article!

Some researchers suggest that people give because they value being a part of the group.

Maybe the first step is to make sure that you can do things without being influenced by the crowd. Then, if you feel the need to do something, like help a stranger, you won't worry about what others might think.

I don't think it was or is about worrying about what others think. It's about feeling connected with others around you in a positive and peaceful way. It only takes one action and not a group to inspire another so I wouldn't say they are following the herd or being influenced by it, there's just that longing for connection with others :)

The entire post was about feeling connected, yes.
However, as the highlighted sentence points out, a lot of people do not want do something because of the fear of what the group might think. This is how bullying happens. If everyone bullies a kid other kids would be worried about standing up for the kid, because they don't want to perceived as uncool by the group.

In order to avoid that trap of not helping others due to peer pressure, the first step is to know that it only matters how you think about yourself and not how the group thinks of you.

the sentence doesn't point that out, it doesn't say people aren't giving because of fear over what others might think :) has nothing to do with the perceptions of others.

Wow...okay. I think I have been looking at the screen with text too long.

I swear it said people give up. LOL Anyway, what I said is also true. If you value what the group thinks over what you think of yourself, you will be less likely to help others.

i get what you're saying, def don't want the herd to dominate your life

This is a GREAT post and very true. I was going through a toll both one Xmas eve night and the booth worker told me someone had paid my toll. Would I want to take it or pay it forward. How could anyone not pay it forward. A nice gesture to whoever started it.

Great post.Very inspiring and attractive article.
Follow me and also see my stuff.

Thanks for your good post .Help others without any reason and give without the expectation of receiving anything in return.

I agree with you..nice..
love others to love yourself !!!!!!

This is a great post! There are a lot of little things that each one of us can do to make a big difference in someones life. I am trying something on Steemit to help people and it was inspired by another Steemit member. Now two other people have contacted me and told me it inspired them. I appreciate you posting this. You picked up a new follower.

Here is the post I was talking about. The more votes I get the more food I can take to the Food Bank.
https://steemit.com/steemit/@walkingkeys/steemit-i-could-use-some-help-feeding-the-homeless

steemit is founded on kindness,humbleness,engagement.as illustrated in the post "One Act Of Kindness Inspiring Many More" it surely inspires and you feel secure and wanted.

resteemed

Really good friends, all will be better if started with good. Very good article and i really like it :-)

Wonderful article! I was listening to a TedTalks called "wired for altruism" the other day that mentioned that the most altruistic people's brains are actually wired differently. The world would be a much better place if we all practiced altruism in our daily life :)

Kindness is the beauty of life !! harvest the seed of Kindness in your heart and keep let it grow until it become a tree then you will find best and juicy fruit hanging on the tree .. Be Kind Be Cool !! Live your Life with Kindness !!!


or ARK :)

It's like sneezing. But less painful.

Your posts are really cool, can I please ask you for a huge favour to resteem my last introduceyourself post, I'm trying to get up to 50 followers, will do anything back to help you!!!

This post has been ranked within the top 50 most undervalued posts in the second half of Jun 21. We estimate that this post is undervalued by $83.10 as compared to a scenario in which every voter had an equal say.

See the full rankings and details in The Daily Tribune: Jun 21 - Part II. You can also read about some of our methodology, data analysis and technical details in our initial post.

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Its nice that many people were willing to pay it forward. February 17th is random act of kindness day. I always liked that they had a national day to try to promote kind acts.

Very Good motivational post. In today's world where every body busy in making their on wealth. And some of us only think about others. Humanity and love with nature, selflessness are very rare now.
Do all are you doing ,spread your kindness to others.

This is definitely a very real thing. And it's very motivating to pay it forward. Great post.

Really warm heart,isn't it?World must be damn nice when act of kindness spread like virus.Small act can make a difference.

Great post.

Thanks for sharing this as I believe it is true.

Fllow . Upvote

Plz some support on my page

Great stuff man, we all need more kindness in our lives.

Sorry again for not being around as much here for you as I would like. I am finding it very hard to keep with things!

Thank you my friend for a nice publication

Its good that people can recognize kindness and when they see someone else being kind they follow suit. Would this mean that they are unable to have any original thoughts? Do these people follow not so positive things and do that because other people are doing it. Yes they do Wakey wakey sleepy heads. Love the post!