How to put a spring in your step (Give)

Spring usually begins in March and it is during this month that we start to notice a change in the weather and hopefully see less grey dreary days and sunnier, clearer days. Often people describe the start of spring as a time when they come out of hibernation and start to think more positively and plan ways to improve their wellbeing.

Evidence suggests that there are many factors that improve wellbeing and most people would agree that giving to others is a good idea. Studies state that an act of giving or kindness (no matter how small) can increase our mood, provide a sense of purpose and self-worth and can lead to us feeling more satisfied with our lives. It can also serve to strengthen relationships and build new ones, and as social contact, is essential for our wellbeing and sense of belonging, it can only be a good thing.

However, we often lead busy lives and our time and energy is precious, so giving to others can seem like another job to put on our “to do list”. It is important to remember that giving can take many forms, from small everyday acts to larger commitments. Remember improving your wellbeing is the aim here, so think about the time you have available to give and tailor what you do accordingly.

It may be useful to think about how you would feel if someone did something kind for you and this may enable you to think about ways you can help and give to others.

Here are some ideas to get you thinking about how you can start to give, and hopefully help you realise that the smallest acts can have a positive impact on both yours and the others person’s wellbeing.

Today, you could:

  • Say thank you to someone, for something they’ve done for you.
  • Phone a relative or friend who needs support or company.
  • Ask a colleague how they are and really listen to the answer.
  • Offer to lend a hand if you see a stranger struggling with bags or a pushchair.

This week, you could:

  • Arrange a day out for you and a friend or relative.
  • Offer to help a relative with DIY or a colleague with a work project.
  • Send a card to someone you know has been ill
  • Offer to babysit for someone who needs a little time to their selves
  • Sign up to a mentoring project, in which you give time and support to someone who will benefit from it.
  • Volunteer in your local community. That might mean helping out at a local school, hospital or care home.

You can contact your local volunteer bureau on 01902 773761.

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