In early sobriety, we are always looking for ways to improve our mental health. According to research, one of the best ways to improve our wellbeing is simply by being kind to others. Most recovery programs place importance on helping others as a means of maintaining sobriety. By acting selflessly and making kindness a priority, we strengthen our sense of happiness, joyousness, and freedom in our recovery. There are scientifically proven benefits of being kind. Stress and anxiety are common in early sobriety, but kindness can help reduce these negative feelings. According to Science of People, “Next time you’re having a chaotic day, take a breather and do a random act of kindness. Studies have found that doing kind things for others, even if it’s as simple as holding a door open for a stranger or offering a couple minutes of help to a coworker, minimizes stressful emotions.” In one study, published in Clinical Psychological Science, researchers found that people who performed acts of kindness throughout the day were less likely to report negative emotions. Those who were unable to perform acts of kindness during the day were more likely to experience bad moods and poorer mental health. Acts of kindness have a positive impact on the brain. According to Jessica Cassity, in a Happify Daily article entitled The Science of Giving: Why One Act of Kindness is Usually Followed by Another, “When you are kind to another person, your brain’s pleasure and reward centers light up, as if you were the recipient of the good deed—not the giver, according to research from Emory University. This phenomenon has actually earned the nickname “helper’s high” among psychologists who study generosity, and some researchers theorize that the sensation is also due to a release of endorphins, those feel-good chemicals associated with runner’s high. It’s no surprise then, that a 2010 Harvard Business School survey of happiness in 136 countries found that people who are altruistic—in this case, people who were generous financially, such as with charitable donations—were happiest overall.” Those who were recipients of acts of kindness were more likely to “pay it forward” by acting with kindness toward others, creating a cycle of altruism and selflessness that positively impacts everyone.
Your story can become one of happiness, joyousness, and freedom in sobriety. You can make the decision to seek help now and embark upon the rewarding journey of recovery. Oceanfront Recovery, located in beautiful Laguna Beach, is staffed with knowledgeable and compassionate professionals dedicated to helping clients develop coping skills to live a full and balanced life, free from substances. For information about individualized treatment options, please call today: (877) 279-1777