In the Netflix Documentary “Live to 100: Secrets of the Blue Zones,” Dan Buettner uncovers his learning from investigating the secrets of living to 100 and beyond with a healthy, happy, fulfilling lifestyle.
One of the vital components of this is volunteering. Giving our time to others for a purpose beyond our own needs provides us with many benefits. These include happiness, fulfilment and a social network. As a result, we are healthier and have a greater lifespan.
How do we find that perfect volunteering gig that will bring us the fulfilment and happiness that is on offer?
We could just jump into something. There are always plenty of organisations crying out for help. There are always needs to be fulfilled.
Before you do, stop and consider what it is that will bring you fulfilment. What is it that you will enjoy doing?
Hang on a minute! Do you mean it is about me?
Yes, it is. When you volunteer somewhere that will bring you happiness and fulfilment, you can and will give it your all. You won’t get burnt out. You will stick to it longer. And that is good for both you and the organisation you are volunteering with.
When you are choosing your career, you give it a lot of thought. You think about the work that you will be doing. You think about the environment you will be in. The people you will mix with. The opportunities that lay ahead that you will enjoy doing. Why not do the same with volunteering? In actual fact, it is even more critical, as you won’t be paid financially to compensate for your time.
Your payment is the enjoyment, the friends, the happiness and the fulfilment that you find.
In my book “Compassionate Purpose: Discovering a Life of Fulfilment,” I set out many examples of people who have found that fulfilment in life by taking on Social Missions of various types. I also explore the steps that you can take to find that perfect volunteering gig that will bring you joy. Some of these include taking a look at your values, your skills and your passions. What are the activities that bring you the most joy in life? Is there a way you can do these with others?
The important thing for us to know is that whoever you are, wherever you are, no matter the circumstances you find yourself in, there is something you can do that will make a difference. There is something you can do to help others and to make the world a better place.
When we put this into the front of our mind and consider that, as Dan Buettner found, it is essential for our well-being and longevity. We will live a happier and more fulfilled life.