Giving is Good for You!

By Maji Mazuri

Majimazuri_Make-a-difference-giving-is-good-for-youSure, getting a gift feels good. But research shows that giving feels even better. Here’s why.

Science-backed research shows that generosity has benefits for the giver, ranging from a better outlook, to more years of life. Helping others could boost your happiness at work, according to research out of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and it’s beneficial to the greater good! In fact, a study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences showed generosity trumps selfishness when it comes to success in the long run. In a strategic game involving multiple people, being generous led to more success than being selfish. More was achieved where there was cooperation and collaboration with everyone benefiting from working together, that in situations where one person dominates the other, forcing them to receive a lower payoff.

Giving lowers stress. Being stingy is linked with higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol, according to a study from social psychologist Liz Dunn. Giving also helps you enjoy more years of life. Researchers from the University of Buffalo found a link between giving and unselfishness and having a lower risk of early death, specifically by buffering the association between stress and mortality. A retrospective review of 40 studies published in the journal BMC Public Health showed that giving promotes mental health. Volunteering not only improves well-being and life satisfaction, but it’s also linked with decreased depression and a lower risk of dying early.

Need more reasons to give? Not only does giving keep the cycle of “good” going, giving will keep your marriage stronger. Make 2016 your year to make a difference… it will make a difference in your life!

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