Let’s take a look at some words of kindness we can use to bring more kindness to the people closest to us.
We may think that saying something nice and saying something kind are the same thing, but kindness is a bit more multifaceted. Let’s use an example. Maybe you’re at a family party that your cousin hosted. She made a huge feast for everyone at the party, but you can tell that she’s exhausted and seems like she might need support. Let’s say your sister is the nice one, but you’re the kind one. What do you think each of you would say to your cousin? Your nice sister might say, “thanks for the food!” But, maybe you say, “it must have taken you so long to make this delicious meal, how can I help you clean up?” Do you see the difference?
Words of niceness are saying agreeable things (which are totally fine comments to give!), but words of kindness often come from a place of care, benevolence, and support (Binfet, 2015). When we say words to be kind, we are offering the receiver of our kindness genuine words that show appreciation, helpfulness, and compassion. Words of kindness come from a deeper goal to give yourself emotionally to others.
Kindness for a Friend
No matter how long we’ve known someone or how close we are to our friends, it’s important to remind them how important they are and continue to show up for them when they need a friend. Here are some words of kindness for these special people in our lives.
I am so blessed to have you in my life.
You mean the world to me.
Thank you for always being such a warm and caring friend.
Your smile always makes me feel safe.
You always light up every room you walk into. I’m so glad you’re here
I appreciate our friendship so much.
I love how you always bring out the best in people.
I always feel safe with you.
I love when we get to spend time together.
I love you.
Kindness for Students
No matter how young students may be, learning to balance their home life, friends, and school work can be tough. Whether you are a teacher, a daycare specialist, a parent, an older sibling, or a fellow student yourself, here are some words of kindness for the folks in your life who are in school.
You are so smart.
Can I help you study for the big test coming up?
You’re balancing so much and I’m so proud of you.
I know school has been hard but I believe in you.
Do you need any support for your homework tonight?
I can see you are improving, you’re doing such a great job.
Your ideas and opinions are important and they matter.
You make a difference. Thank you for being here.
I always want to hear what you have to say.
You are welcome and safe in this classroom.
Kindness for a Coworker
Whether we see our coworkers in the office every day or they appear in the small Zoom boxes on our screens, we spend a lot of time with the people we work with. While we may think it’s naturally easier to be kind to the people in our personal lives, those who are in our professional worlds deserve kindness too. Here are some words of kindness you may consider using for your coworkers.
I know you have a big project that’s due soon. Is there anything I can support you with?
I’m so glad you’re on this team with us.
I admire how you lead us and treat everyone with respect.
You give amazing advice.
Sometimes on hard days, I like coming to you for positivity. Thanks for making this feel like a great place to work.
Something I appreciate about you is that you always find a way to get things done. And they’re always done so well.
I know you’ve been working really hard on this assignment. I hope you have taken some time to take a break too.
Thanks for taking me under your wing, I’ve learned so much about this job because of you.
Thank you for your feedback. It always helps me grow.
I couldn’t have finished this project without you, thanks for being here for me.
Congrats on the new job! I know you’re going to be great.
You inspire me to do more meaningful work.
When we use our care and compassion for others through communication, we not only spread kindness to them, but we help create a domino effect that continues the cycle of being kind. Words are merely just one way to express kindness to the people in your life—or maybe even the strangers you see walking down the street. I gently challenge you to recognize someone in your life today and tell them something meaningful and kind. Think about how it makes you feel and try to gauge their reaction, too.
Binfet, J. T. (2015). Not-so Random Acts of Kindness: A Guide to Intentional Kindness in the Classroom. International Journal of Emotional Education, 7(2), 49-62.