A colleague of mine once wrote, “When people open their hearts, in an act of compassion in action, everyone benefits, including the people giving of themselves.” There has been a significant amount of research done in the past two decades that has suggested that volunteering may affect your health and well-being. Here are a few of the benefits you can think about.
- Did you know that states with a high volunteer rate had lower rates heart disease and mortality? So it must do the body good.
- Research has shown that people who volunteer seem to be more satisfied with their life and have more of a purpose.
- MRI tests have revealed that volunteering may give you a “helper’s high” which basically is saying that doing good is good for your brain.
- Volunteering can give you an opportunity develop skills and training you may never have had before.You may learn how to be a good manager or learn marketing skills. It can also be a fun way to explore interests and passions you haven’t had a chance to try yet. Who knows, this may help you get a better job.
- Volunteering is a great way to enhance your social network by meeting new people you wouldn’t have had a chance to meet before. It gives you an opportunity to break away from your day-to-day normal routine which can be the energizing respite you need.
So overall, if you get the chance to volunteer I would try it. You don’t have to make hours of commitment, just carve out a little time to do it. Also, get your whole family involved. Remember, children watch everything you do.
Grimm Jr., Spring, & Dietz: Office of Research & Policy Development, Corporation for National & Community Service, 2007