‘Generosity’ – the quality of being generous and kind
Thriving isn’t just about what we do for ourselves but also how we treat others. Giving back or being generous and showing kindness, can actually have health benefits as well as just making us feel warm and fuzzy inside. Scientific studies show that giving back or showing kindness and generosity can have major impacts on our health, including:
- reduced blood pressure,
- reduced stress,
- improved mood,
- improved immune system and
- increased sense of purpose.
The University of Zurich Euroeconomists in a recent study, found that:
Generosity makes people happier, even if they are only a little generous. People who act solely out of self-interest are less happy. Merely promising to be more generous is enough to trigger a change in our brains that makes us happier.
Philippe Tobler and Ernst Fehr from the Department of Economics at the University of Zurich investigated how brain areas communicate to produce the feeling of warmth or happiness when we focus on the well-being of others rather than ourselves.
On surprising result was that results showed even if you only expended a small amount of generosity there was still a positive affect.
I regularly volunteer at my Mother-In-Law’s aged care home and it is such a rewarding experience. Many times, I only need to say ‘hello’ and give the residents a ‘smile’ to make their day. Other times, I have the joy of helping them learn new activities or venture out of the home to see exhibitions or movies.
Volunteering isn’t the only way to be generous.
- You can donate to a charity
- Sponsor a child
- Donate to a wildlife fund
- Simply give some of your time to family and friends. Time costs nothing but can sometimes mean so much more than money.
Share the Dignity is an Australian charity I like to support through their Share the Dignity’s #itsinthebag campaign Each year, this charity helps homeless women and victims of domestic violence. All I needed to do was fill a handbag with personal toiletry items for distribution to women in need. Not much of a sacrifice of time or money for me, but it has so much meaning to the women who receive my donation.
Generosity – 10 Benefits of being Generous & Kind
- You make someone feel special and loved
- You will feel happier and more fulfilled being kind to others
- The reward of a smile and knowing you have made someone feel good makes you feel good
- Kindness is contagious
- It builds relationships – we are nicer people to be around
- Improves your mental well-being
- We feel more compassion
- You will feel more positive and enjoy life
- It makes us appreciate and be grateful for all we have
- We learn tolerance
What is one act of kindness or generosity you can do today?
In my next post in the A to Z Guide to Thriving, I’m discussing ‘H’ is for Holistic Health, 10 tips to Creating a Holistic, Healthy Lifestyle
If you have missed previous posts in the AtoZ Challenge 2018 just click here to find them all.
You might also like to check out my Over 50 & Thriving series. In this series, published every Thursday, guest writers give insight into what ‘Over 50 & Thriving’ means to them.
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