Many of us spend a lot of time focusing on self improvement, and what we can do to make our lives better. We work out at the gym, read self help books, go to church, and attend self help related classes. We often become so focused on ourselves, that we don’t pay attention to the world around us. Volunteering is a great way to improve both yourself, and others. You gain a great sense of accomplishment from helping others.
Many people feel that volunteering doesn’t fit into their busy schedule, but you don’t have to try to save the world, just give a few hours of your time each week to a good cause. Your local elementary school, for example, loves to have volunteers. You can go spend two hours a week, and make a big difference in a child’s life. Eat lunch with them, or help them learn to read. Local libraries always like to have volunteers in to help with special events, as well as hospitals and churches.
Volunteering is also a good way to learn new skills, or brush up on existing ones. Many companies will now allow you a few hours a month that you can use specifically for volunteering in your community. They enjoy the notoriety they get in the community by showing good will. This is also a great booster on your resume. It shows that you are a caring person, and that genuinely wants to help make the community a better place. You may even learn new skills that can help you be better at your job.
You will meet many new people during your volunteering career, and this people can be potential contacts later on. It is important to build a good list of contacts, especially business related, to have as sources of references, potential employers, etc. By helping others, you will often find that the favor will be returned in the future, often when you need it the most and least expect it.
Helping others is a good opportunity to build your own skills as well. While mentoring someone else, you may be able to spot your own personal flaws, enabling you to correct them wile teaching someone else.
Volunteering your time and knowledge also helps you feel a lot better about yourself. Knowing that you are helping someone and making a difference in their life will often help you feel more satisfied and at ease with yourself. You also will have more confidence, which will carry over into all aspects of your life. Self esteem is also boosted by helping others.
If you are enrolled in a college program, volunteering can also earn you additional academic credit. This is always a plus, as it allows you extra credit for your time that you spend helping others. If you are working in your field, you can also hone your skills, which will help further your college career and possibly boost your GPA as well.
If you still need a reason to volunteer your time, consider how fun it can be. At the very least, you will make some new friends, and have someone to do things with, other than spend time alone in front of the television or spaced out in front of the computer.
You will never regret the time that you spend helping someone else. There will always be places in the community for volunteers, just find your niche, and go for it! You will definitely receive your own benefits as well.