A neighbor or worthy cause benefits from your time and talents.
Benefits you receive from giving:
- Skills, experience, and networking that can help your career
- Increased self-worth and self-confidence
- A stronger sense of community
- New friends
- Personal mastery and sense of being in control
- The opportunity to advance a cause you care about
- Feeling needed and valued
- Experiencing something new
Experiencing all of these benefits comes easier when there’s a good fit between you, the activity, and the organization or person you’re volunteering for.
Suggestions for finding a good match:
- Choose a cause that matters deeply to you
- Think about the skills and talents you want to use; do you want to use the same skills you’ve honed at work? Or are you looking for a chance to exercise talents you don’t use every day? Or do you want to learn new skills?
- Communicate clearly about how much time you can contribute; don’t overcommit
- Take advantage of any training or professional development opportunities you receive while volunteering—and express your gratitude for them
In 2007, about 26% of Americans volunteered, according to the Corporation for National and Community Service. The most volunteers were found among midsize cities, college towns, college graduates, working women, and women with children.
The How of Happiness, by Sonja Lyubormirsky
National & Community Service