A welcome ceremony for singer Teddy Afro

Research indicates that showing kindness not only encourages others to follow suit, but also generates a positive feedback loop that reaches up to three degrees of separation among our acquaintances. Acts of kindness have a knock-on effect, influencing the lives of others and inspiring generosity wherever they go, much like a pebble in a pond. According to a study, a 28-year-old anonymous donor gave a kidney when he entered a clinic. It started a “pay it forward” kind of chain reaction wherein recipients of kidney transplants’ spouses or other family members gave one of their own to a stranger in need. Because it feels good to be nice, kindness increases levels of secretory immunoglobulin A, an essential immune system antibody. The fact that this effect can be activated only by observing compassion is among the most astounding findings of this study. Indeed, ‘observing’ kindness. It functions because the feeling of kindness is what produces the immune-stimulating impact, regardless of whether kindness is shown or received. Conversely, stress also has the opposite effect on immune function, and it does so because of the way stress feels whether it is from going through a stressful situation or from seeing unfavorable content online.

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