8 Intrinsically Wonderful Benefits of Helping Others ...

Help Other People whenever you can -- it's good karma! When you help other people, whether as an official volunteer or simply as an informal arrangement, is sometimes seen as a 'goody-goody' activity, or something that most working people don't have time for. We can all help others in some way, which will benefit not only them but also ourselves. Here are some of the great results when you do something to help other people.

1. Warm Glow

You don't have to aspire to sainthood to want to help other people out. Doing voluntary work or simply doing someone a good turn can make you feel really good. There's nothing wrong with getting something out of it yourself. In fact, it’s more likely to make you want to continue if you enjoy what you’re doing.

2. Fulfilling a Need

With funding for public services increasingly being cut, it is often the elderly and most vulnerable citizens who suffer as a result. Charities and voluntary groups often step in to fill the gap. So when you help other people in this way, you can be doing your bit towards fulfilling a desperate need for assistance.

3. Return Favours

When someone has helped you out, it’s really nice to return the favour. It might not be expected, but it’s a very positive thing to do. People don’t always want to get something in exchange for doing you a good turn, but it shows that you value what they did and you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you repaid the favour.

4. Pay It Back

Alternatively, you don’t need to return a favour to someone who did one for you. The idea of paying it forward is that someone does something for you, you then help a third person, who helps out a fourth … and so the chain builds up. The bonus here is that you can make someone’s day simply by doing something nice for them.

5. Skills and Experience

When you do voluntary work, not only do you help other people, but you can help yourself in a very useful way. By giving your time, you can gain experience in a field you would like to work in, and gain relevant or transferable skills. This can prove very advantageous in jobhunting.

6. Appreciation

People are usually grateful when you do them a good turn (unless they have a lack of manners). And that makes you feel good – we all like to feel appreciated. It's nice to get positive feedback.

7. Make a Difference

Helping others out can make a big difference to their lives. Shopping for an elderly neighbour or donating some baby clothes to a young family doesn't take much effort, yet it can make things a lot easier for them. There are so many ways to make a difference for another person with just a little thought.

8. Karma

Karma can get you back when you've done something wrong – but the opposite also holds true, especially when you help other people. Do someone else a good turn and you may be paid back in the most unexpected of ways. Perhaps it will be something tangible, like them letting you know about a job vacancy – or something much more mysterious …

So these points show you that when you help other people, there are all kinds of benefits to be gained, both for yourself and for them. Helping others isn't just for the saintly; rather, when you help other people, it allows you to be part of a community and connect with others, even in a city. What kinds of things happen when you help other people?

Top Photo Credit: Terra Nova Fondation