Fifth of My Values – Contribution

When you think of contributing or giving, often you get the image of standing in a soup kitchen, hair net on, serving a meal to someone less fortunate than ourselves. And that is a really admiral way of volunteering your time to help others. It’s definitely not the only way. There are millions of ways to contribute or add value.

I used to think that I was so busy, I didn’t have time to volunteer to help others. I had it stuck in my mind that I had to give up hours of my time in a scheduled, ongoing way. That really isn’t the case. I also believed that donating money to a worthy cause was enough to tick that box. And whilst that is a great way to contribute to society, and if you can afford it, definitely do it, it didn’t fulfill the need I had deep down to give back.

One day I started to get this feeling that I wanted to do something more meaningful with my life. Maybe it was getting older that triggered it, maybe it was having kids, but whatever the reason, I felt a little empty. In years gone by, that notion of volunteering would have been triggered by what I “should” be doing, or what other people would think of me. This time it was different, it was in my gut and I also felt that I had stuff to give back.

As we grow and develop ourselves, we start to understand that we have a lot of offer other people and adding value to other peoples lives brings a sense of contentment that I don’t think anything else can. We all develop skills and knowledge that by freely passing them along can improve the lives of not only strangers and those in our village but also ourselves. You can do it in an organized way, such as a structure class, or as I like to, in the moment with a conversation. It’s also why I write these articles, in the hopes that even one person will get some value out of it.

However you do it, giving back to those around you because you want to or feel the deep need to brings a joy to life and meaningfulness that nothing else can. And remember, you don’t have to give by doing what everyone else is, you just need to find the thing that you can contribute to add value to the lives of others.

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