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There are a lot of people out there. Billions of them!

But here's a question for you: Is most of humankind actually kind?

It can be a tricky question. It seems simple, but the answer can get complicated — fast.


Image via Thinkstock.

Researchers were also curious about this kindness thing, so they conducted some interesting studies.

They found that when people thought about their own social circles, they said those people seemed pretty kind. But grow that circle to society in general, and the answer changes quickly.

Psychologists learned that when it comes to the big picture, people are more likely to view society in general as not so nice after all.

How can we change that cynicism?

Well, we can start by being curious. By getting out there. Asking questions. Chatting with strangers. Exploring. Challenging comfort zones. Carpe-ing the diem.

Thanks to increased connectivity, we have access to more people, ideas, and places than ever before. Finding the kindness in humankind just takes that one first step beyond our own walls.

Exploring our world brings out our empathy, too. Take it from Mark Twain.

He once saidtraveling "is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness."

We'd like to think he was telling us that traveling brings out the best in all of us. It helps us understand each other.

Image via Thinkstock.

Not to mention that discovering the world brings about new ideas, different perspectives, and a refreshing sense of self (and it's terrific for your health).

Exploring the world might help you to understand other perspectives.

Sometimes it can be tough to see the good in our world when a 24-hour news cycle is full of bad news. But in many vital ways, the world is actually becoming a much better place to live.

Who knows? Maybe you just need a trip to [insert bucket list destination here] to see it all from a different window than your own.

And another bonus: Finding the kindness in others might be contagious.

Want to start a revolution? We know that acts of kindness can inspire other acts of kindness.

Image via Thinkstock.

By taking one step out into the world, you could be inspiring empathy in people you don't even know.

Exploring your world can start now.

Just as long journeys begin with one step, goodness can be found in the next state (or even street) over — no new time zone required. After all, it's all about taking baby steps.

You just need to make the first move, like this adorable tot.


Let's get out there.

Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.

This article originally appeared on 08.21.18


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Her father is Abel Rodriguez, a veteran airman who, after tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, was training at Travis Air Force Base in California, 1,700 miles from his family in San Antonio at the time.

"Mom missed the memo it was parent day, and the reason her mom missed the memo was her dad left Wednesday," said Alexis Perry-Rodriguez, Addie's mom. She continued, "It was really heartbreaking to see your daughter standing out there being the only one without their father, knowing why he's away. It's not just an absentee parent. He's serving our country."

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Memories of childhood get lodged in the brain, emerging when you least expect.

There are certain pleasurable sights, smells, sounds and tastes that fade into the rear-view mirror as we grow from being children to adults. But on a rare occasion, we’ll come across them again and it's like a portion of our brain that’s been hidden for years expresses itself, creating a huge jolt of joy.

It’s wonderful to experience this type of nostalgia but it often leaves a bittersweet feeling because we know there are countless more sensations that may never come into our consciousness again.

Nostalgia is fleeting and that's a good thing because it’s best not to live in the past. But it does remind us that the wonderful feeling of freedom, creativity and fun from our childhood can still be experienced as we age.

A Reddit user by the name of agentMICHAELscarnTLM posed a question to the online forum that dredged up countless memories and experiences that many had long forgotten. He asked a simple question, “What’s something you can bring up right now to unlock some childhood nostalgia for the rest of us?”

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