Wellness is a buzzword these days. It’s everywhere you look. What exactly does it mean? That’s subjective and depends on who you ask. Most people seem to agree that wellness incorporates anything that makes you feel good physically and/or mentally. Because of this, some activities such as eating well and exercising are universal. On the other hand, things such as reading or journaling are subjective and may or may not bring you pleasure. Did you know, though, that seeing volunteering as a wellness practice has its benefits?
If you’re looking for a new way to cultivate wellness in your life you may want to look into volunteering. Research is finding what many people already know: giving your time and talent to help others makes us feel good. If you already volunteer you probably already know this. You may not have thought about it as a wellness practice.
Mental Health Benefits
Volunteering has shown in many ways to help lower rates of depression and loneliness. When you are volunteering you are interacting with other people- those who you are directly benefiting as well as those who share your passions and are volunteering with you. As a result, it allows you to meet new people and cultivate friendships with like-minded individuals.
For the same reason, volunteering helps you develop social and networking skills. As a result, this can lead to increased confidence when searching for a job or speaking in public. These benefits, as well as others, can lead to an overall improved sense of wellbeing and personal confidence.
Mental health benefits aren’t the only positive impact we can find to our personal wellness. Some studies are showing that there may be physical health benefits to volunteering as well. These studies show that volunteering has a positive correlation (not necessarily causation) to lower stress levels and blood pressure readings.
Due to increased physical activity often involved, volunteering has also been shown to improve overall physical health. Examples are walking, bending, stooping, stretching, reaching, etc. For those who live a sedentary lifestyle, volunteering is a great way to increase your physical activity and feel good about yourself and what you’re doing.
Volunteering is a great way to get involved and give back to your community. Not only will you be giving back, but you will reap numerous rewards for yourself as well. Consider adding volunteering as a wellness practice. No matter what level of wellness practice you have in your life, you can make improvements by adding volunteerism to your routine. Check out these articles to learn more about the benefits of volunteering.