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Related Content: The Power of a Smile
“Whenever you are having a bad day, go out and serve someone else.”
These words were like a mantra from my mom. When we seek to focus our attention on others problems – we soon find what was bothering us really wasn’t that big a deal.
The Good Stuff has a great article listing 10 simple ways to be happier, but I’d venture to add a number 11 – Serve Others! It’s almost impossible to serve others and walk away feeling worse.
Serving Others Equals More Happiness
Wonder why that is? Science. Our brains are wired to feel better when acting selflessly. I dare you to go out and do some kind of service without a smile. When we are truly out serving others, you can’t.
Now, can you give service without a smile? Absolutely, people in customer service do it all the time. But is that really service at that point? If you go into serving others grudgingly, you won’t get anything out of it.
Next time you are feeling a little blue, or out of sorts, find some small act of service. A random act of kindness will do the trick even.
Gives You a Greater sense of Purpose
Have you ever wondered if you had anything to give? Or if there was any purpose to your life? Perhaps you feel disconnected from life altogether?
Going out to serve others will help you find a greater purpose to your own life. Whether it is delivering meals to shut ins, reading books with the under privileged, or genuinely smiling at the cashier and thanking them for what they do.
Allowing others to feel loved through us – I’m telling you right now, that it just doesn’t get much better than that.
Removes the Focus from Our selves
Focusing on our selves can lead to many problems. For one, it goes back to that selfish brain science. A selfish attitude decreases our happiness. When we search to always get what we want, and make our lives perfect, we may find ourselves on a wild goose chase – there will always be something “better” on the other side of the fence.
However, when we remove that focus and give it to serving others, and improving the lives of others, we will naturally find that our life gets better too. And when our life is naturally better, we are better.
Giving service doesn’t have to be some huge production. In fact, it’s really quite easy. My favorite place to look for service opportunities is on JustServe.org. You’ll find a lot of local organizations looking for volunteers here.
For those local to Indianapolis, check out my fellow influencer on Instagram at GiveBackIndy. We’ve had the opportunity to give service together, and she’s always sharing ways to get involved!
If you don’t have time to volunteer, then simply taking the time to wish someone a good day, to offer a genuine smile, or share a compliment will go a long way in boosting your own mood.