Wednesday, August 24, 2016

The Joy of Giving

How important is it to give back?  To a cause...or to your community? And to simply try to make a better world?

We have heard over and over again that it is more blessed to give than to receive and for many who give to charity it becomes a useful write off at tax time. But, there are other real and tangible benefits to giving that can be felt rather than seen.

Studies have shown that there are instant health benefits to helping others, the simple act of giving up your seat on the bus, volunteering at a soup kitchen, or helping an elderly neighbor can give a big boost to your health. Being of service to others without expecting something in return is good for your spirit and your soul.

With selfless service often comes the volunteer's version of the runner's high. For many people, performing charitable acts, volunteering or even simply writing a check to support a good cause can trigger the release of the feel-good hormone oxytocin into the bloodstream. The results? A naturally-induced reduction in anxiety levels, less stress-triggered cortisol circulating throughout the body and generally more positive feelings.
So giving not only makes you feel good mentally, but tangibly contributes to your overall health and well-being. But, there are still other benefits of giving.

Every time we help someone less fortunate than ourselves, or volunteer at a community event, or mentor a child, or give to a cause we are making this world a better place, we are creating a better space for our children to inherit. 

There is a joy in knowing that with each contribution we make whether of our time, our knowledge, or our money we are building a stronger community.

Plainfield, we cannot be as strong as we want to be as long as there is even one person in need among us…as long as there are children whose parents may not have the financial means to send them to school…as long as there are elderly people who cannot help themselves and have no means to afford help…as long as there are those who have nowhere to live. As long as need exists around us, we cannot stop giving, we cannot stop volunteering, and we cannot close our hearts.

The time for giving is now—not tomorrow, not at Christmas—but now. We may not be able to give financially, but time and knowledge are priceless things to give to someone. There has never been a better time to kick start your way into a healthier life by giving, than now.

Plainfield...won't you join me? Let's make a pledge as we continue to build and grow our community that we will give, we will help, we will experience the joy this brings... together, and we'll leave this world a better place than we found it.

Creating One Plainfield - One Future,

Mayor Adrian O. Mapp
City of Plainfield

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