Need a mental boost? Here’s what you need to know: shifting your outer state always begins with shifting your inner state, and kindness is one of the quickest ways to shift your inner state.
“The Joy of Loving Kindness” practice comes from Google pioneer Chade-Meng Tan and is something anyone can easily do to immediately improve their inner state.
Sure, it’s nice to know someone wishes you good thoughts. But that’s not the point. Mental practices like meditation, prayer, and “The Joy of Loving Kindness” change YOU on the inside, which in turn ripples through everyone around you on the outside. After all, we’re all simply reacting to the energy around us.
To practice The Joy of Loving Kindness, randomly identify two people (either in the room you’re in, or whom you’ve recently encountered) and think to yourself, “I wish for this person to be happy,” and “I wish for this person to be happy.”
It’s as simple as that.
This is an internal practice, no need to mention it to anyone.
You can say the person’s name to yourself if you know it, but it’s not necessary. As a bonus, continue to do this throughout the day, and/ or add this to your morning gratitude routine. Enjoy the wave of happiness from wishing others to be happy.
I was first introduced to this concept in Tim Ferriss’s book, Tools of Titans, which says:
“Once an hour, every hour, randomly identify two people walking past your office and secretly wish for each of them to be happy. You don’t have to do or say anything—just think, ‘I wish for this person to be happy.'” (BTW: It’s a great book, I highly recommend it!)
Feels pretty great, yeah? Now, imagine the opposite. Doesn’t feel as good, does it? If we want the world to change, it has to start with each of us on the inside, first.
Wondering if this really works? It’s scientifically proven.
In a recent study* , results indicate that performing kindness activities for seven days increases happiness. In addition, there is a positive correlation between the number of kind acts and increases in happiness. The study also concluded that kindness to yourself, kindness to a close acquaintance, kindness to someone you don’t even know, or simply observing kindness all have equally positive effects on happiness.
I’m even practicing this to you right now and you don’t even know it 😉
Give The Joy of Loving Kindness a try then come back and let us know in the comments how it works out. Did you notice any shifts? How do you feel when you consistently practice this? What have you observed about yourself and your surroundings? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below.
Instead of prescribing what I think you should do, I help you find what works for you.