Participation in social and community life has attracted a lot of attention in the field of wellbeing research. Individuals who report a greater interest in helping others are more likely to rate themselves as happy.
Research into actions for promoting happiness has shown that committing an act of kindness once a week over a six-week period is associated with an increase in wellbeing.
Organisations and charities are always on the lookout for volunteers to bolster their numbers and often rely on them to carry out some of their work without having to dip into their funds. Volunteering can often be very rewarding and worthwhile for those who get involved.
Volunteer opportunities for telephone befriending and home visits in St Ives. A small time commitment could make a huge difference to an older person, reducing loneliness and isolation
What are the health benefits of kindness?
Helping others feels good - studies have found that acts of kindness are linked to increased feelings of wellbeing.
It creates a sense of belonging and reduces isolation - it helps you create, maintain and strengthen social connections.
It helps keep things in perspective - doing good may give you a more positive outlook about your own circumstances.
It helps to make the world a happier place - one act of kindness can often lead to more.
The more you do for others, the more you do for yourself - helping others can improve your self esteem.
Remember to be kind to yourself:
Prioritise some 'me' time, so you can relax and reflect on how your day or week has been so far
Turn off your social media channels for day, or even a week
Treat yourself to something small, such as buying or planting some flowers
Do something you enjoy, like listening to a favourite song or dancing in your kitchen
Spend some time in nature, which is good for our mental health
From the Mental Health Foundation
A guide to show the positive impact helping others can have on your own mental health, including some tips and suggestions to inspire you. Do something kind for a friend or a stranger today.