Why You Should Be Making Time To Volunteer

You’re in the middle of a long week at work, you might spend your nights with a quick dinner and some TV before bed. The last thing you want is having to feel nagged into investing more energy. Volunteering is great, but you may just be too busy at the moment. Giving your time doesn’t need to feel like it’s dragging you down, and can actually improve not only your happiness and self-worth, but it can help your professional life.

Here is what I think you stand to benefit:

Satisfaction and Love

For most people, the most obvious benefit is that those who volunteer often feel happier. They’d be right, but happiness is only the beginning. Volunteering your time will help you empathize with, and love others more readily. All this while feeling more of it. This extends to your family, friends, pets; whoever is in your life. You will feel closer to them and a strong desire to care for them.

Volunteering brings you closer to your community, gives you a personal investment in those around you, and gives you a sense of pride to know that you’re neighbors and community are taken care of. In no small part, thanks to you.

Time Becomes Less Of A Worry

It is one of the conundrums of human nature, but when we give things freely, we feel like we have more. This is commonly seen when people giving away money feel wealthier. The same goes for time. While it may be hard to initially give up a few evenings every month, you might find that you actually feel less burdened by a lack of hours in a day. This will help you stay focused on the tasks at hand. Deadlines may not feel as if they are looming over you, as much.

Disclaimer, it won’t actually give you more time. However, it will change your perspective on how you spend your day. Those few Saturday afternoons or Wednesday evenings will negate feelings of wasted time. You’ll find yourself feeling purposeful and find a new sense of value in who you are as an individual.

You’ll Be Healthier

The physical health benefits of volunteering will pay off down the road. You’ll be less likely to become depressed, you’ll likely live longer, and you’ll be able to do more later on in life. Furthermore, volunteering your time to do work that requires a bit of physical work only increases the benefits.

The two previous benefits, Time and Happiness, will also decrease stress. Managing your stress will help alleviate anxiety, and improve your overall mental health.

Gain Experience

Perhaps the best benefit towards your professional life is gaining the chance to do work that you enjoy and learn new skills. This can help you jump into a career down the road, or simply give you the chance to follow a dream without having to reinvent your life. This could mean volunteering at a local radio station, working with teenagers and kids, or joining a local brass band or orchestra. Volunteering your time will give you the opportunity to grow into fields that are often closed off without right level of experience.

The benefits of volunteering result in a happier, healthier, and more rounded life style. It may be difficult to make the time in your schedule, but finding the time will only improve your life. Only a minority of people volunteer in the US, despite the fact that the benefits of volunteering go a long ways towards keeping nonprofits afloat. Exploring what organizations are working your neighborhood, or looking for one that is in a field that interests you is a great way to start. Furthermore, determine how much time you can feasibly commit. There is no sense in overbooking your life. Remember, that even a little bit can go a long way. So get out there, and keep setting goals for yourself to become the best you can be!