Volunteering and Its Surprising Benefits

Dibyendu Mukherjee Dallas

April 17, 2023


Volunteering is a great way to meet new people and build connections. It also teaches you important skills that will help in your career.

You can find volunteering opportunities that suit your interests, skill set, and time availability. From helping children at a local school or walking dogs for an animal shelter to serving as a baby cuddler, there is something for everyone!

It’s Good for Your Mental Health

Volunteering has been shown to increase feelings of happiness. This is because a person feels good about helping others and the social connections they make.

Those who feel lonely or isolated can develop high levels of stress hormones called cortisol, which can negatively affect their health. The good news is that volunteering can reduce those levels of cortisol and can even boost your mood!

Researchers have found that people with chronic health conditions, such as arthritis or heart disease, experience fewer symptoms of depression after becoming involved in their community through volunteering.

Research has also found that older adults who regularly volunteered had lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels than their non-volunteers. They were also more satisfied with their lives and had less anxiety and depression.

It’s Good for Your Physical Health

Whether washing cars for a fundraiser or hosting a dance class at an assisted living facility, volunteer work pumps your blood. Research shows it can boost your overall health.

Volunteering also encourages you to move more and connect with people, which reduces stress. Chronic stress is linked to several health issues, including high blood pressure, depression and loneliness.

Researchers found older adults who volunteered were 40 per cent less likely to develop high blood pressure than their non-volunteer counterparts. This isn’t surprising because increased physical activity and decreased stress contribute to a healthy heart.

In addition, volunteering provides a sense of purpose and appreciation. This feeling lowers your stress, which can reduce the risk of many health problems, including heart disease, stroke, depression, anxiety and general illness, the Mayo Clinic said.

It’s Good for Your Social Life

Volunteering can be a great way to meet new people. It helps to strengthen your ties to your community and broadens your support network, so you can meet friends who share common interests and passions.

It also allows you to practice important skills like teamwork, communication, problem-solving, project planning, and task management. This is especially helpful if you’re considering changing careers and need to build up a portfolio of experience in your field.

Studies have shown that volunteering can also benefit your mental health and emotional well-being, so you’ll likely feel happier and more content afterwards. This is because volunteering increases dopamine levels in your brain, which can amplify positive feelings and moods.

It’s Good for Your Career

If you’re looking for a career or need some help getting unstuck, volunteering is an incredible way to gain hands-on experience and build your skills. It also helps you make industry connections and develop a stronger network, which is crucial for a successful job search.

Volunteering is a great way to build your resume, and it shows employers that you’re proactive and interested in developing your skills. It can also increase your self-confidence, which is a key career asset.

The connections you make as a volunteer can also help you find your next position or get into your ideal job after you graduate. As a result, many hiring managers view volunteer work as a desirable skill to possess when recruiting.

Lastly, volunteering can be an incredible way to connect with like-minded people who share your values. This can help you build a strong support system and strengthen your confidence.