Key Takeaways:

As we get older and retire and have a bit more time on our hands, many turn toward volunteering, and research shows that the happiest older adults were those who made it a part of their lives all along.

Volunteering: most of us have done it at some point in our lives. For some it was routine,  but for others,  life got perhaps a bit too busy. Yet, as we get older and retire and have a bit more time on our hands, many turn toward volunteering, and research shows that the happiest older adults were those who made it a part of their lives all along.

Research suggests that volunteers aren’t just helping the communities they serve, but helping themselves. Volunteering has positive health benefits for the volunteer.

According to a study, volunteering can provide mental and physical health, life satisfaction, social well-being, and depression prevention. Even though these effects may vary from person to person, it still seems like a great idea!

The CDC found before the pandemic that more than a third of Americans are experiencing symptoms of anxiety or depression. This likely only increased with the pandemic. Therefore, a great way to give and improve your mental health as we move out of the pandemic phase is volunteering.

Research published in the Journal of Happiness Studies examined data from nearly 70,000 participants in the United Kingdom. These participants received surveys about their volunteering habits and their mental health, including their distress and functioning in everyday life, every two years from 1996 to 2014. Overall those who volunteered seemed to be - happier. There may not be one key to happiness but it just might be that volunteering could take you one step closer to your happiness goals.

May 23, 2022
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Liz Miller

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