Perhaps you’ve heard someone quip, “Love what you do and you’ll never work a day in your life.” There’s a way you can “love what you do” even if you don’t have your dream job: VOLUNTEER!
Volunteering is “an act of free will that results in benefits to others.”
Studies over the years show that volunteering benefits YOU, too.
A Harvard study showed that volunteers over age 50 reduced their blood pressure, as compared to a control group. And a study of more than 40 scientific research papers showed that volunteering positively effected depression, life satisfaction and wellbeing.
Even just an hour or two a month of regular volunteering made all the difference.
Volunteering can get you outside more, it can give you a reason to be more active. It connects you with others in your community.
Being more connected means it’s easier to get information you can use to be healthier. And you can also receive—and provide—emotional support from one another.
Having a high sense of purpose — linked to feelings of satisfaction and optimism — has even been shown to lower peoples’ risk of heart attacks.
So find a cause, a person, an organization that you want to help.
Do it for the simple reason that you love it and want to make a difference — and you’ll begin to see the effects on your emotional and physical well-being.
Need a place to start?
We’ve enjoyed volunteering or donating to these local community groups:
- Aldo Leopold Center: Environmental Issues / Education
- Porchlight: Local issues (homelessness)
- Ethical Trade Company: International Fair Trade and ethically sourced goods.
Tell us, where do you like to volunteer?