Science shows that engaging in acts of kindness not only helps the receiver, it helps the giver too. While the challenges the world faces right now might make it seem like there are too many obstacles that won’t allow you to spread kindness, there are still plenty of ways you can do something nice for others.

1. Share a Smile and a Kind Word With Strangers

At a time when many people feel isolated, even in crowds, a simple smile or kind word can do wonders. Standing six feet apart and wearing masks is necessary for the health and safety of everyone, but when people can’t engage with others, it can lead to loneliness and depression. It can happen to anyone, including yourself. Making that connection with the people you see on the street makes them and you feel better.

2. Offer To Rake Leaves for a Neighbor

Fall is here, which means leaves are taking a tumble. Knock on a neighbor’s door and offer to rake their leaves for them. Anyone is likely to appreciate the offer, and take you up on it, but if you know of someone who is in need, your services may provide them with a great sense relief. As an added bonus, you’ll get a bit of exercise and fresh air.

3. Volunteer To Walk Dogs at an Animal Shelter

Often, animal shelters have more dogs than they have staff to provide extra attention. Most of these places have volunteer programs already in place, and all you need to do is sign up. You will be helping the staff and giving an animal some much-needed attention. Taking time to play with the shelter’s cats is another great option. In return, you get the benefits from petting animals, watching them play and receiving their affection in return.

The world needs kindness right now. Reaching across the invisible barriers the pandemic has put in place reveals plenty of opportunities to engage in acts of kindness, including sharing a smile with a stranger, raking your neighbor’s leaves and volunteering at an animal shelter.

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