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Sharing is Caring: 6 Scientifically Proven Ways Helping Others Can Improve Your Life

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I’ve come to believe that the simple formula for happiness and success in life lies in caring about others, helping them in any way we can, and sharing what we have. I learned this the hard way. In the beginning, when I was striving for career success, better relationships, improved overall health and mental well-being, I thought others had nothing to do with it, that it’s a battle I had to win on my own.

With this mindset, though, I made my life more complicated and didn’t improve personally, spiritually, or professionally any time soon. Then, I decided to give another approach a try. To make others part of my journey in small ways, but do it every day. I began talking to both strangers and people in my surroundings more, opening up, sharing my goals and giving them advice, or simply listening to their problems and showing compassion.

I stopped investing my time only in ‘me’ activities, and began doing ‘we’ activities. That could be seeing someone in need and spending time with them even if I didn’t feel like it, becoming more active in the local community, volunteering even. All that paid off tenfold because I received so much in return that my career, happiness level, relationships and peace of mind were all improving. After experiencing the wonderful benefits of helping others, I did my research and found out all these positive effects were actually science-backed.

So let me share how sharing and caring can improve our life and maybe inspire you to start doing more for others too:

1. Helping others is good for your health

I’ll begin with the health benefits of caring about others. Doing something altruistic leads to positive physiological changes, strengthens the immune system, and can even reduce pain, thanks to the release of endorphins in the brain.

I started volunteering many years ago and had the chance to experience those benefits first hand. Turns out, volunteers often live longer and have a better general health than those who never get involved in giving to others. I believe it’s the little things that matter. Being there for the person in need is one example. That is if you choose a cause that involves direct communication with the less fortunate, of course.

Nothing compares to seeing another human being open up and realizing no one ever listened to that person, not many cared, and that he might not know what compassion looks like. So when you give them exactly that by simply keeping them company, you can see the transformation in their eyes. As a result, that changes you too.

2. It helps us handle stress better

We all have stressors in our lives, whether we admit it or not. But little did I know that the solution to this too was hidden in volunteering. Once I began doing more for others and focusing less on my desires and needs, my mental health improved. I found meaning, I felt good about myself, and signs of depression, stress, and anxiety started disappearing. Researchers have proven that too and state that because of this, volunteering can increase our lifespan.

3. We form a deeper connection with ourselves thanks to sharing

Giving is a way to connect with others but it also helps us get to know ourselves better, forgive ourselves, and be more compassionate. Ultimately, that leads to feeling good about ourselves and forming a deeper connection that then helps us live a purpose-driven life.

We appreciate everything more when we volunteer. It changes our perspective. It’s proven to distract us from our own problems and thus help us deal with the hardships in life. I can’t count the many deep conversations I’ve had with people I wanted to help and that meant more for them than any food they were given that same day. It’s because they forgot what real connection looks like and once they experienced it, their souls were reborn.

But there were also many examples from my volunteering experience where we just sat there with the person and connected on a deeper level without saying a word. As you know, words aren’t always necessary. But energy can’t be wrong. That person in front of me felt I was there to give without expecting anything in return and simply accepted my good energy and sent back gratitude.

4. Doing good for others improves our social life

Along with a better relationship with ourselves, we who volunteer also have a better social life. It all begins by noticing a new form of social connection once we start helping those in need. That might lead to friendships that last long. But even if it’s just for the sake of making somebody smile after serving them a meal at a shelter, it’s all for a good cause and we socialize in the most genuine way possible. As multiple studies have suggested, we are social beings and the more interactions we have in life, the better the condition of our brain is

5. Increased happiness levels

Nothing has ever made me feel more thankful for what I already have than giving. Helping others somehow opens our eyes to how little other people might have and we feel like we live in abundance. Then, we begin cherishing all the people in our life, our own body and mind, and each of our precious days on this planet more. We use our time more effectively, do things we love, and socialize.

Every time you do a good deed for others, you get a feeling of euphoria (that’s the endorphins released in the brain) and you feel great. Such a mental boost is even addictive and we seek more of the same feeling once we get to experience it.

People in need can’t fake it and they also can’t hide their happiness. So you are sure they are truly thankful and pleasantly surprised when you go the extra mile. I saw this when I stayed with them longer than planned and they knew I just wanted to be there with them than anywhere else.

Other times I would bring them personalized gifts such as a picture of a place at the other corner of the world so they can dream of being there and have a vision for a better life. Or a book we’ve discussed if I see they like reading and losing themselves in stories.

6. Give more for better relationships

Last but not least, I noticed that giving is good for my relationships. That too is scientifically-proven. One reason is the spiritual growth we experience as a result of giving more. We find meaning and fill the void inside, we are now complete and braver. That boosts self-esteem.

Another great benefit of helping others which affects our already existing relationships in life is the gratitude we are filled with. That transforms into caring about anyone around us more, appreciating their company and making every minute with them count. My loved ones immediately noticed I treated them better, with respect, listened more, and complained less.

I hope these science-backed points will motivate you to find little ways to help others today. Our mission in life is not always sure, but it is connected to going beyond ourselves. And that’s exactly what I did which I consider a turning point in my life. I wish you the same revelation!

Sarah Williams is a lifestyle blogger and online entrepreneur who shares her ideas about  how to date better on her blog: Wingman Magazine. Her ultimate goal is to empower men to become the best versions of themselves and help them benefit from social interactions. She is passionate about powerful, conscious living.

Life

Here’s Why Productivity Hacks Don’t Work

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How many times have you eagerly tried out a new productivity hack or tool and not gotten the result you expected? There is wealth of information available to us giving us everything we need to know to increase our productivity, but most people live their life in chaos.  Why do still see so many people struggling to manage their time and simply not able to get the results they desire?  What is missing? (more…)

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Life

4 Lies You Keep Telling Yourself When You’re Afraid to Do Something

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When’s the last time you let fear get the better of you? Whether we want to admit it or not, fear keeps us from doing a lot of the things we know we really should do to achieve our goals. Fear is especially detrimental to entrepreneurs (read ‘wantrepreneurs’) that want to launch their first big project. (more…)

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Tips, Tools, and Techniques to Create Your Curiosity

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Curiosity is a great characteristic that people rarely sustain in their lifetimes. Some people struggle to sustain curiosity because of their internal and external challenges. They cannot encourage curiosity to come to the fore as they condition their mindsets with their learning, experience, and environment. However, there are very few individuals who sustain their curiosity levels throughout their lives to excel as extraordinary achievers.  (more…)

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5 Life Tips You Didn’t Know You Needed to Hear

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Life is a battleground, we need to keep fighting until our appointed time on earth comes. So, in this post, you will see the best of the best life tips you have never heard before. These tips are life-changing and can change you immediately. Let’s go!

1. Be independent 

Hundreds of millions of people make this mistake. We depend on people like us. “he will get it done for me, she will get it done for me”. You rely heavily on people and guess what, you are making a big mistake. 

There are a lot of people that have helped others and perhaps time changes for them, they become poor and rely on the people they have helped, guess what comes out at the end of this reliance? Disappointment, promises backed by failures, etc. 

Who are you depending on? Who is that person you can’t do without when getting things in your life done? If there is anyone, you are making a big mistake. And starting today, all you have to do is add a prefix – what if!

What if my friend stops helping me, what if I get disappointed by people I trust with my life, what if they neglect me and turn me down”.

A man or woman that depends on people like him is equal to a feeble pillar holding the four corners of a house. What happens when the feeble pillar falls? The man’s house falls down super-flat. Your trust should only be in Jesus. Man can fail us at any time but God is always faithful till his Kingdom comes. 

2. Love your neighbor as yourself 

The gravity of this word is enough to shatter the whole earth into pieces. 

Only if the whole world just kept this simple commandment Christ Jesus gave then, there will be no murders, poverty, greediness, anger, envy, betrayal, disappointment, etc. 

Why are there such things in the world? Because we hate ourselves. As long as you are fine all is well. You care about yourself only, selfish, you have and yet you cannot give. 

Those are the characteristics of over 90% of the 7.6 billion humans on earth. Why can’t you do to others what you would have them do to you? Why can’t you help that suffering neighbor who needs food? Then, a lot of people will say 

“Go away from here beggar, what did you do with your youth, I can’t give you a dime, beggar”. Why are we so cruel? This is the best tip you must dear to your heart. 

No matter what you have, no matter how little or in whatever way you can help. Help people, show them love, love them as you love yourself. Don’t forget this, today’s beggar, uneducated, debtor, poor person, etc can later become the greatest person in the world tomorrow. 

“Don’t settle for what life gives you; make life better and build something.” — Ashton Kutcher

3. Have a growth mindset

A growth mindset is what makes one successful and go far in life. However, a fixed and stagnated mindset throws one into jeopardy of life.

A lot of people have a fixed mindset, what they believe is what they believe, nothing you say on earth can change their mindset, they are the most educated in the world so they don’t need to learn any further. Did you have a fixed or growth mindset?

A growth mindset leads to success, achievements, happiness, learning more, and becoming better. On the other hand, a fixed mindset leads to complacency, pride, lack of achievement, ignorance, the stagnancy of the mind, etc. 

Let’s see an example of someone with a fixed mindset:

Cait tells Alice: Alice stop being so proud it’s annoying. 

And Alice responds:

“How dare you say I am proud, I am not. I am the most humble woman on earth”. In the example, Alice with a fixed mindset has a fixed mindset. However, what she does not know is that she is in the darkness of her ignorance. She is ignorant of the fact that she is a proud person thus, she can’t see it. 

People with a fixed mindset are ignorant. You must never have a fixed mindset. Always be willing to learn and to grow with humility. Pride can take you nowhere. 

4. Forgive everyone and give as many second chances as you can  

A lot of people have done all they could to be happy and have peace. But, they find out that happiness is not just there and that peace of mind is absent. 

Why is that? It is because you have a lot of grudge against people that have offended you. Yes, we know, it pained you to your heart, and what next? Keep malice? But, do you know what that unforgiveness does to you?

I call it the seed of unforgiveness because it plants a seed in your heart and this seed further grows to become hatred, depression, lack of freedom, zero peace, etc. 

If in only one person’s heart are all these things, then a person like that can never know peace and happiness. For example, if you were to go to a party with your friends and you hear that perhaps the other friend that you keep malice with is coming to the same party. 

Naturally, the only thing you would think of is not going to the party anymore because you want to avoid the person at all costs. And what does that add to you? It doesn’t add instead, it subtracts from your life because you could have gone to the party, had fun, and even have new friends or even new opportunities.

If not for anything will you forgive people, forgive them for the sake of God, for the sake of Christ Jesus. Because if you cannot forget the trespass of people, don’t expect God to forgive you. Forgive everyone, give them as many second chances as possible. 

Mind you, they can still mess up and make terrible mistakes all you have to do is keep forgiving them. This may not be so easy to the flesh. However, it is only The Spirit of God that can make you forgive the trespass of people. Without The Holy Spirit, it is impossible to do so. 

5. Love God

Do you love God? Are you a child of God? Do you believe in Christ Jesus? Even if the rest of the tips on these lists do not resonate with you, I want you to hold this very important to your heart which is to Love God with all your heart, soul, and strength.

And you can do that only by being a child of God. This life is too short. It is like a vapor, it is nothing. Life is more like an empty barrel that makes noise. You will grow old, your strength will leave you and you will die but, what happens after that? Where are you going to spend the rest of your eternity? 

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