When you help someone, this creates a feeling of satisfaction that has positive effects on your health.
Medical advisor David Rolong Schweiger – Psychologist
Our daily obligations and the lack of time to do different activities leads to creating routines and to stress or a lack of interest. Little by little, this limits how we help or collaborate with others. This behavior generally arises when extreme situations occur such as with emergencies or accidents. However, an intention to do something is not the same as actually putting in the effort.
Psychologist David Rolong Schweiger explains that when somebody helps others, it is because there is a lot of feeling involved. “If you are indifferent to a situation, you won’t move a finger,” he states. Rolong explains that it is important to find ways to make these indifferent feelings, human ones.
Helping others, he adds, also brings health benefits that range from fighting stress and feeling better about yourself to strengthening your emotional connections. “If you can help save another, you are also doing something for yourself,” the specialist says.
In any case, what is important is to help others in a genuine way without seeking benefits for oneself, which is the opposite of displaying supportive behavior.
“People can go to extremes, where helping others can be used to influence others negatively. For example, ‘While everyone else is in different, at least I am doing something for the world,’” states the psychologist, emphasizing that it is also not about convincing others to do the same as you.
On the other hand, when this form of help is an attempt to compensate for something that the individual could not do in the past, and things did not turn out as planned, “…very strong feelings of frustration can arise,” Rolong says.
It is essential to be clear about what you want to do and how you can help. Never expect anything in exchange or expect to take advantage of the situation, the benefit is in the sense of unity that is created.
How can I help?
- Instead of waiting for a major disaster to occur, you can support people or activities in your daily life. It is important to identify what you connect with before you begin to work helping others.
- In addition to making donations, for example, places such as nursing homes or children’s homes need people that can offer their company. Some people also offer their time to feed people living in the street.
- Another way to help it is to visit animal shelters and provide them with food, participate in adoption campaigns or work in clean-up crews to help the environment.
- There are also volunteer opportunities to build or improve homes for others, or participate in humanitarian projects in isolated areas.