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Giving backThis article is not meant as an instruction or lecture, rather it is my endeavour to share my life’s experiences and how giving back has helped. Life for everyone is tough – yet it is human nature to consider one’s own life tougher than anyone else. The reality however is that there are people ‘out there’ facing far greater trials and tribulations and lead a much harder life than you do.

People face challenges daily – in some of the most basic areas of life – not making enough money to meet expenses, not having enough to eat or having a place to live and not having access to education. Giving back is about easing someone’s problems – not by offering some cheap product or helping them in exchange for something. Giving back is meant to be selfless – it is giving without expectation of any benefits, reward, recognition or any other such tangible something. Giving back is being happy in the knowledge that you have done something for someone in need – touched their life and made a significant impact for then. Your action has made them more positive and spread some happiness in their life.

There is really no way to describe the feeling you experience when you give back. For us it may be a small insignificant act of kindness and thoughtfulness but for the receiver it would make a world of difference. Don’t shy away from doing even the smallest act of goodness and kindness – it always brings about a transformation. Giving back in the form of volunteering for example – brings about a sense of belonging, enables the sharing of ideas and thoughts amongst people from different communities and backgrounds and enriches one’s life due to the lack of expecting anything in return. It is a feeling of gratification and self-development.

I have done some volunteering work too – which began with the thought that I would help others. Initially, it helped me gain vital experience, meet like-minded and sometimes influential people and gained for me new insights and skills. However, with time that inexplicable glow I would feel on the inside when I helped someone and received a wide eyed expression or a 500 watt smile in return, made me realize the actual importance of giving back. It built character and thankfulness for my own life and the people I cared about. Giving back without expectation gave me a sense of purpose, optimism and a feeling of being useful in more ways than one. I was able to keep many negative thoughts and depressive behaviour at bay – I stopped fixating on problems that I seemingly had and instead felt a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. Each time I am able to make a positive difference, I feel uplifted and empowered and it fills me with more confidence to face the challenges and problems of life. It leaves me with a feeling of well-being, of knowing that I can take on more. I also feel more alive and my physical and psychological states are boosted with vibrancy and energy.

Giving back returns to you much more than you give – it gives life meaning and you feel fired from within and you are filled with an overpowering sense of freedom, joy and usefulness. This feeling is irreplaceable, priceless and is not one that money or business success can get for you.