Thought Leaders//

How To Find and Give Kindness During an Epidemic

Founders of Kind Campaign, Lauren Paul and Molly Thompson, talk about the importance of being kind to yourself and others during uncertain times.

Getty Images
Getty Images

Times of uncertainty can cause overwhelming emotions, including stress, anxiety, and exhaustion. It can feel impossible to combat these feelings, especially with many unknowns ahead. We’re here to send you a virtual hug and remind you that you’re not alone. 

Throughout our 10 years of spreading Kind Campaign, we’ve had the opportunity to practice and teach tips on kindness with hundreds of thousands of people across the globe who come from different backgrounds, age groups, and chapters of life. Many ask, “How can something as simple as kindness help combat how I’m feeling?” 

While there can be so many feelings swimming through our hearts throughout each day, practicing kindness, both to ourselves and others, is such a crucial step towards nurturing our own souls and communities when the world needs it most. 

Here are a few ways you can be kind to yourself, and others, through this time: 

Be patient

There is no right or wrong way to process all that’s been going on. Be patient with yourself and others. Wrap your arms around yourself right now and give yourself a deep hug. You deserve it. When you treat yourself like your best friend, you will naturally show kindness to those around you. 

Ask yourself these questions: 

  • How are you feeling today?
  • What is something you have felt proud of during this time?
  • Is there someone or something that is adding more stress to your life? If so, how can you eliminate or manage it?
  • Is there something you have started doing during this time that you want to carry into your life?

Small gestures make a huge difference 

Little acts of kindness will positively impact you and whoever they serve. Here’s some ideas:

  • Check out a few of our favorite organizations on the front lines of Covid-19 relief: No Kid Hungry, WHO, One Fair Wage and Baby 2 Baby.
  • Leave a thank you letter or gift for a local essential worker. A homemade card or flowers for your grocery store clerk or Amazon delivery personnel.    
  • Check out our Kind Campaign Community Series on Instagram! We’re sharing tangible steps to help you connect with yourself and others! 

Disconnect when you can

While it’s important to stay informed, it can be easy to fall into the rabbit hole of news. Try to find a healthy balance with this. Now that we are deeper into the routine of this, while being educated on everything is absolutely crucial, try not to let it consume your day. Even if just for a small portion of your day, choose music instead of scrolling. Pick up a pen or paintbrush instead of your phone. Open your window instead of an app. Listen to the world. It will never be this quiet again.  

Give yourself a simple pick me up 

Here are some simple ways to love on yourself:

  • Do you have kids? Find 20 minutes a day for you. Sit in silence, read, or have your coffee alone by your window. You deserve it. 
  • Take a shower. It can be easy to forget and it makes you feel so much better.
  • Get dressed for the day sometimes. Maybe even put on a little lip gloss and your favorite earrings. While this may seem unrealistic most of the time, we’ve found it really does feel good once in a while. 
  • Go to sleep early sometimes (especially if you have kids). We both have little ones and although nighttime feels like the only “me time” we have right now, indulging in a little 8:00pm bedtime does wonders for your physical and mental health. 

Reach out for help if you need it

At the end of the day, no matter how intentional you are about checking in with yourself, this is hard.  It’s okay if none of this feels motivating. There’s a lot of people feeling deep things right now. Know that although you may feel alone in proximity, you are not. If you need more support, here’s a couple resources: 

Disaster Distress Helpline, call 1-800-985-5990, or text TalkWithUs to 66746

National Domestic Violence Hotline or call 1-800-799-7233 and TTY 1-800-787-3224

This time can feel overwhelming. These tips are all just some gentle ideas. Pick them up or put them down. If you don’t feel creative right now, that’s ok. If you’re having a hard time working, that’s ok. If you’re feeling parental anxiety, that’s ok. We are in this together. 

In the depths of the anxiety and uncertainty, we know one thing for sure. When this is all over, we will look each other in the eyes with a deeper sense of connection, understanding and love. For the first time, all of humanity has one common goal. When we walk down the streets again one day, and we smile and nod at each other, we will just know.

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