When you are sad, down or feel depressed, how do you handle it? Do you sit and dwell in it or simply feel like a victim of your circumstances? Do you cry and get it out? Do you do something for someone else? Or, perhaps, you do a little of everything.
One of the most powerful and helpful ways to move through pain, hurt, sorrow or sadness and shift, is to first let yourself move through your feelings and then do something to help someone else. Focusing on someone else helps you put things in perspective and turns your pain into gain not only for you but for others.
Many research studies have proven that helping others regularly is essential to bettering your well-being, moderating mood swings and boosting your immune system.
Volunteering or giving back doesn’t have to be something “big” or overwhelming. It can be as simple as a smile, hug, calling a friend that you just thought about, sending a card to someone going through a difficult time or really listening and being with someone in need. You might feel called to volunteer at a soup kitchen, focus on recycling, offer to mow your neighbor’s grass or start a new community project. What you do doesn’t matter as long as you feel like you are contributing by helping others.
Maybe you’ve had an idea or a way you have wanted to make a difference yet you never felt you had the time or didn’t make the time. This could be just the perfect opportunity to make a difference while turning your hurt into greater good.
I have always loved the “pay it forward” concept. “You don’t need much to change the world for the better. You can start with most ordinary ingredients. You can start with the world you’ve got.” This quote is from the 2000 movie, Pay It Forward.
Have you ever purchased coffee or gone through a drive thru and the person in front of you paid your bill? It’s a meaningful way for your contribution to spread wings and stretch further. It’s about paying it forward.
Everyone experiences life’s peaks and valleys. The way we choose to handle these ups and downs is what really matters. Focusing on others during your next down moment can help make the world a better place and might possibly be the best way for you to move out of that valley and into the next happy time in your life. So, think about how you can pay it forward today.