Kindness and why we are hard-wired for it.

Uncategorized Nov 18, 2021

Kindness is not just a fluffy feeling

Imagine a global pandemic of kindness. Not the kind of kindness that is sickly or insipid. But kindness that runs deep into a community, that makes people feel seen and connected, a part of something bigger and builds faith, trust and hope again in humanity - in each other. The kind of kindness that means something. 

Kindness is not just about being ‘nice’, it is a powerful substance that touches our lives. It it is about community, togetherness and being seen, heard and belonging. We are all deeply entrenched in kindness, if we recognise it or not. It is woven into the corner stones of our culture as an ethical way to live. It underpins our laws and policies, religious systems and care systems. Kindness - altruism - or selflessness is part of the fabric of our humanity. However, sometimes it seems that the world is full of cruelty and inhumanity. We can feel traumatised...

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Bullying - Could early intervention be the key to closing the door on this behaviour?

Sadly bullying seems to be part of our human journey. It's nothing new. We or someone close to us is likely to have experienced bullying. However, with the growth of social media and apps like Tik Tok being used to share unkindness, we seem to have created a society where bullying is more prevalent than ever before. For those who are on the receiving end of this behaviour, it can have devastating and life altering effects.  
 
So what are we doing about it? I do believe that we need to be active in challenging this behaviour, but I don’t believe that it’s about discipline and banning social media. I believe it’s deeper than this, MUCH deeper. It involves redefining and creating healthy beliefs about self and others. It’s about building deep internal values and an understanding of the value of our own lives and the lives of others. It’s not a quick fix, but I do believe it is fixable! 
 
My work began looking at the question...
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How did the Culture of the Heart begin and what does it aim to do?

The Culture of the Heart is a series of picture books and lesson plans, activities and activations for schools, that help children develop their understanding of self and other’s. It builds and supports safe and relational learning communities, healthy mental habits and emotional literacy.

The Culture of the Heart began as artist run workshops in schools in 2016. Staff saw such impact of the content on the children I was asked to write down the lesson plans with an SLE literacy lead. The Culture of the Heart began to grow.

At that point, the research became deeply significant. Books, lectures, podcasts, the latest psychology, emotional intelligence, neuroscience, childhood development, healthy leadership and community research was consumed. Rabbit hole deep-dives on culture building, well-being studies and counselling techniques and strategies. Every book, lecture, podcast, tedtalk, around well-being and mental health that I could...

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