If you want happiness for an hour, take a nap. If you want happiness for a day, go fishing. If you want happiness for a year, inherit a fortune. If you want happiness for a lifetime, help somebody. ~Chinese Proverb
Psst! Want to know the secret to happiness? It’s not a mani-pedi. It’s not a five-course meal at a Michelin-starred restaurant. In fact, it’s free.
After tracking 2,000 people for five years, sociologists discovered the happiest of the bunch were those who volunteered at least 5.8 hours a month. Helping others raises our positivity, benefits our emotional well-being, and tickles the same pleasure center in our brains as taking a bite of our favorite food. We’re hard-wired to be altruistic.
Increasing employee happiness AND making the world a better place? Sign us up! As of January 1st, FULL employees will accrue 1.33 hours of paid time each month to volunteer in their communities.This year, we’ve committed to logging 7,500 hours volunteering as a team.
The Portland, Oregon, team is kicking us off with a day spent planting trees at Nadaka Nature Park in Gresham. For decades, this 10-acre area in was surrounded by an eight-foot chain-link fence topped with barbed wire, inaccessible to the public. It took the determination of one woman, Lee Dayfield, to turn it into a park full of walking paths, play areas, a community garden, and more. The FULL team will spend the morning of February 9th ensuring Lee’s vision is upheld.
In North Carolina, Account Executive Tiff Greene has been hosting coffee meetups with her team to discuss potential volunteer events in their area. “I love being able to be out there helping others and meeting new people,” says Tiff. “I think it’s important, especially when you feel so blessed with what you have. Donating your time is my favorite part of volunteering.” On the wishlist of possible events are the Cape Fear Volunteer Center and the Jacksonville Women’s Shelter.
If you’re feeling inspired, there are plenty of ways to find your own volunteering opportunities in your community. Websites such as VolunteerMatch.org and Idealist.org let you search for volunteer openings by location, cause, and schedule. And local animal shelters, food banks, Habitat for Humanity programs, and libraries are always on the lookout for helping hands.