What if you were told the secret to happiness? A secret that would truly work. It would make you and others around you feel instantly happy. It might sound to good to be true.
What if it was to be part of a happy experiment that gives away free cash to participants? What if you were told it would leave you feeling happier than ever?…
There have been a few popular studies that did just this. A scientific study began by welcoming in a group of participants and giving each and every one of them the same amount of cash for free. Then they were split into two groups.
One group was told to spend the money on themselves. There was no catch. They were given the opportunity to choose what they wanted to spend their free cash on. It could be ANYTHING.
The second group was told to give the money away. To be angels, in my opinion. They were also able to choose where their money went, as in who they wanted to give it to or which organization they wished to donate to, but it was not to be used on any purchases for themselves.
What were the results? The group that was told to give their money away showed more satisfaction at the end of the study and were proven to be much happier.
Studies prove that giving contributes to overall happiness…
How can this be? Happiness and giving have been shown to reinforce each other by their ability to create a “domino effect of generosity.” A small amount can go a long way, considering giving connects us to others and positively impacts the world around us. Giving (in anyway) without any strings attached, sparks a light of happiness that spreads quickly to in ways unimaginable.
With this in mind, I challenge you to be part of a HAPPY experiment, one that is PROVEN to increase happiness! It is extremely simple.
The challenge is to give something to someone else…be an angel. It can be someone you know, a charity or a specific project, or somebody you do not know. It does NOT have to be money.
You can choose to donate a small amount to an organization that is close to your heart but here are some other examples of things you can do:
(keep in mind you can be creative and come up with your own way to give too)
You can give a half of a day or a full day volunteering.
You can give one hour of your time to help someone else and maybe teach them something new.
You can give one minute of your time by helping someone carry a suitcase up a flight of stairs (this has happened to me several times and brightened my day each time).
You can give a few seconds of your time by opening the door for someone else.
You can give an instant of your time by smiling at someone.
You can be creative with this.
A Simple Act of Kindness Goes a LONG Way!
Some of my fondest memories stem from a simple gesture, an act of kindness. I’ll leave you with two of my favorite personal examples:
While working in an elementary school, one of the most memorable moments I had was when a second grade birthday boy stood up in front of the whole school and gave an announcement like, “instead of getting any birthday presents this year, I am asking you to donate anything you would like to an organization that I love.” After his birthday he told us he received over $500 in donations. Words cannot express the spark in his eyes and the smile he had on his face. That sparked three more students to do the same thing that year.
Recently, my cousin gave me two hours of her time. She patiently taught me how to create a poncho by hand. She did not loose her temper when I accidentally handcuffed myself in yarn. She sat and explained again and again until I understood exactly what I needed to be doing. The outcome, I made my first poncho and we were both left feeling happier. Her time taught me to create something new and ultimately introduced me to a new hobby.
“Sometimes the greatest gift you can give someone is your time.” -Rick Warren