I am always seeking out healthy habits to combat not so great ones, and one that I have recently become acquainted with in 2019 is the act of volunteering to find a sense of purpose, belonging, appreciation, and gratitude.
Fresh out of college, I worked for a non-profit in Southern California. It was a great agency that did great work helping the droves of homeless people that lined the streets of many SoCal suburbs. With mild(ish) weather, that region was popular for homelessness, as braving the elements wasn’t nearly as difficult as it might be in a place like Chicago.
I learned about the importance of volunteers through that job, but even at that, I was pretty young and not yet fully aware of the scope of our world and all of its many problems. The truth is, even on days when you feel like nothing more could possibly go wrong and you’ve hit the bottom of the bottom, someone else out there has had it so much worse. There is always a lower level, believe it or not, and working around homelessness renews your sense of gratitude for everything you have.
If you have not volunteered before, there are many opportunities for you to choose from, some of which can be completed from home (remote; take-home clerical work). I don’t think the challenge in volunteerism is choosing the opportunity, but rather it’s in putting the right intention behind your volunteered time.