Thursday, July 26, 2018

Volunteer: Is it a mind-game?

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A very common notion around volunteering is that it is about helping others and to ease guilty feelings. It is thought of as ‘more privileged’ people giving to those who are ‘less able’. Our brains are trained to measure everything based on something that is tangible or quantitative. We quantify privileges or abilities also in similar fashion. For example, we measure physical strength by appearance; we estimate the level of education or intellect through degrees/diplomas. The mind is also efficient and inclined in estimating financial strength of a person through visually available signs. To summarize, we are programmed to define ‘more able’ in a limited way. The intangible benefits or strengths which we lack lie in the blind spot zone. We create a self appealing picture to protect our illusive ‘more privileged’ image of ourselves and assume we are positioned to help others. 
After volunteering we feel good which might be due to the heightened feeling of self-worth or self-power associated with this act of ‘giving’. But we turn a blind eye to the ‘taking’ involved in the process. Volunteering is not just about helping others, it’s about helping oneself. There is a lot more one is left with while volunteering than what one gives during the experience. Everyone needs help, everyone needs a volunteer. 

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With the advent in technology, it’s even simpler to volunteer, by volunteering online. A few take-away from volunteering – 
  • A unique experience
  • Understanding of social, economic and legal factors
  • Connections across the globe with volunteering network’s
  • Learning new skills
  • Knowing yourself better
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Understanding socioeconomic factors
New experiences
Teaming up at volunteer social network’s
Empowering yourself and others
Engaging others
Re-inventing yourself

Volunteer not just for others, volunteer and do something for yourself.

~ Ashpreet Dhillon

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