Some say the world is coming to an end. It’s time to lose all hope and give up on your aspirations and dreams because it’s not even worth it, they say. Why even try to be your best when the world will hold you down? If it’s not people, it’s finances. If it’s not finances, it’s the issues that have been holding you back from reaching your full potential for years.
It’s time to change your perspective. And the best way to start is by giving back. Giving back can save your life. Trust me on this one.
I had a conversation with a doctoral student years ago and have read other research that proves that there are psychological and physical effects of performing acts of service. This basically means that you can literally prolong your lifespan by giving back. Imagine the possibility of a few more years to spend with your children and children’s children. Yes, giving back can save your life. But it has to be strategic. You can give of your time, resources, compassion, or services, but whatever you do, give back. It doesn’t have to be regularly, and it definitely doesn’t have to be something you deem stressful. You can even choose to be of service to your friends or colleagues. Find out how you can use your talents and natural gifts to serve someone else or a group of people in your local community. I guarantee there’s a connection.
My personal passion is helping youth. Not only have I felt on top of the world in doing so for the past few years of my life, but I think my experiences in working with youth have made me a better person. I look at the world much more gratefully, I care about and consider other people in all that I do, I know my power to be a blessing to others, I know I’ve impacted the children of some of the students I’ve mentored, and finally, my students have poured into my life as well. The youth I’ve served have written me notes, drawn pictures, wrote emails, or sent texts that have encouraged me and inspired me in some of the most challenging moments of my life. In times when I’ve been physically or emotionally tired, out of nowhere, youth I’ve been disconnected with for years will write me and tell me testimonies of how well they’re doing—sometimes as a result of what I’ve contributed to their lives. While these youth represent a small percentage of all whom I’ve worked with, the size of the impact I’ve had on them and that they’ve had on me can’t be measured. In fact, I’m sure my own friendships, relationships, and professional endeavors have benefited from the person I’ve become as a result of my heart for service. Giving back enhanced my life greatly.
And, you know what, it can do the same for you.
Figure out what you’re passionate about, and make the decision to give of yourself in alignment with whatever that is. I guarantee you, it’ll enhance your life.