Blog Author: Calvin Hollingsworth
One of the most rewarding feelings in life is being able to help those in need. There is a multitude of benefits to giving service to both the giver and receiver. Seeking out opportunities to serve will bring happiness and joy into your life. Plus, it helps with your overall well-being and can help boost your own mental health.
The wonderful thing about serving others is that it doesn’t matter big or small the action is that you do to make someone’s day a little brighter. Some people think that you have to dedicate a lot of time to doing a service project. While that is great, serving others doesn’t always have to be a grandiose activity. The small and simple things we do behind closed doors and out of the limelight are the types of service that make a more impactful difference to those we serve.
One recent experience I have with helping someone is a friend of mine who has a wide variety of health issues including Parkinson’s disease. He is a small business owner who constantly needs help. So, during the pandemic, I was both his business partner and also his personal caregiver when his wife was working. I’ve been helping him for nearly 4 years and he has become one of my best friends. It’s an incredible feeling to be available to him and lighten his burdens.
I know we all are crazy busy wearing multiple hats and we may feel that we don’t have the time, energy, or resources to help others. We don’t need to overcomplicate it. It can be as easy as opening the door for someone, giving a genuine compliment, listening to someone, or spending a little bit of time moving a neighbor that just moved down the street. The key to being available to serve others is to develop a willing and selfless heart.
Society nowadays teaches young people to be selfish and narcissistic. It also teaches us that if we do serve others, we deserve or are entitled to accolades or praise. Though it is important to be selfish in some instances in life, more often than not, you need to not think about yourself all of the time if you want to be truly happy. I hate to break it to you, but the world doesn’t always revolve around you. We should want to help others because we want to make a difference instead of having ulterior motives that boost our ego or self-interests. This is what our modern-day society teaches us, but that doesn’t mean it is right.
Look around you. There are people who are really struggling. There are people who are miserable with no desire to change. There is no question that mental health is such a hot topic in this day and age. Some of the reasons why people have intense mental health issues is due to what our society teaches and they feel this debilitating pressure to be someone that they are not. I can’t stress this more, society does not care about you. But that doesn’t mean you don’t have to care about the individuals within our society.
Being available to others is multi-faceted. It doesn’t only mean doing service projects or helping out at a local shelter or soup kitchen. It also consists of being mentally, emotionally, and even spiritually available as well. It’s difficult for us to help others if we are emotionally distant or checked out mentally. That will cause more harm than good. It is important to make yourself present when you are with someone and it is as simple as giving a listening ear or giving advice when someone wants it.
The moral of this blog post is to inspire you and me to be more aware of opportunities to make others happy. But I can’t force you to become something that you don’t want to be. That, dear viewer, is up to you. If you want to be truly happy, be more readily available to those in your sphere of influence. And if you struggle with mental health issues, all the more reason to help those around you. Through constant effort and time, you will develop coping skills that will help you to better deal with your issues. Who knows, maybe helping someone will be an opportunity for the person you are with to help and inspire you. Maybe one day your good deeds will reciprocate back to you? That’s the beauty of helping others!