Which Child in this Video Will You Be This Easter?
Random acts of kindness. That’s the first thing that came to my mind when I first saw this video. Then came irony. A less-positive thought that overshadowed my first as I began to read the comments listed under a YouTube video posted this spring about an eight-year-old boy who selflessly gave up a baseball to another, younger child.
The health significance of this video is that there is increasing evidence that wellness both physical and mental are affected by random acts of kindness such as the one demonstrated by the 8-year-old at a baseball game.
Multiple supporting studies show repeatedly that performing random acts of kindness benefits the heart, lowers blood pressure, reduces anxiety and increases a person’s perceived levels of happiness and satisfaction in life and at work.
In fact, positive activity interventions such as performing a random act of kindness can do more for treating mental illness such as depression better than many prescription medications.
Furthermore, performing a random act of kindness is 1 of 5 tips gleaned from research by scientists at the University of Alaska that reported that by “doing something good” every now and then leads to a happier and healthier life.
Regarding the video, its significance should not be trivialized and corrupted as evidenced by the comments posted. Trust me―to a kid (let alone many adults), a baseball that was once held by a professional ball player is a treasured item that is not easily relinquished. And as to the child whose expectation and dream of receiving such a gift was beginning to dissolve before his eyes, his reaction was…normal.
Comments that attacked this younger child, attacked his mother’s child-rearing abilities as well as her weight, and offered almost no positive observations, marred an otherwise fine moment demonstrating how a child can teach a valuable lesson to adults as an example to others through an act of kindness.
Inside, we are all that younger child in need of some emotional maturity—whether we show it or not. Id is the normal instinctive and primitive behavior that we learn to control through our superego and ego that comes with time and experience. I’m optimistic in believing that the younger child―who by the way, if you look closely is wearing a team jersey covered with the likely signatures of his baseball heroes―will learn from the other child’s act of kindness and gain some emotional maturity and growth from the selfless act.
So this Easter, it’s undeniable that all of us to some degree are upset with the kid in the video. But now, we can be the other child simply by choosing to do just one random act of kindness. It’s easy, it’s inexpensive, and it just may be the best health advice you will ever follow.
Image Source: Courtesy of YouTube