Reach out, touch and be happy >
Sorry to mention it, but it is Monday. But before you trudge head down back to work, latch onto a major high from the weekend – the stonking feel-good success of ‘Children in Need‘.
It doesn’t matter if you donated or not, just watching the stories of hope, generosity and courage lifted the heaviest hearts.
The message that came across was that people need people. Connections within our communities can be just as important as our close relationships, for our happiness and helping others is a sure fire way of helping ourselves.
Science tells us that giving to others stimulates areas in the brain associated with pleasure, social connection and trust. Altruistic behaviour releases endorphins in the brain increasing our own happiness as well as the people we help. Which means there are knock-on effects, the No1 being that kindness is contagious!
In fact, new research in the field of neuroscience has confirmed that we are hard-wired for positivity, compassion and love. This study even suggests that supporting others extends life expectancy, with communities and societies flourishing when people look out for each other. And the most unsettling finding of all is that giving money away tends to make people happier than spending it on themselves.
This may all sound inspiring, but how might you put it into practice? If you want to be happy there are two tried and tested courses of action – phone Tonic (!) or start considering your well-being as part of the wider community and start volunteering or joining a community group.
Because the bottom line is that contributing to your community can bring great rewards and increase your happiness in so many different ways. Even a simple act of kindness such as regularly visiting a housebound neighbour for a chat will benefit both parties. So cut out your daily session with one of our therapists and instead reach out and touch the world – it needs your help.