Giving is a Good Idea for Your Mind and Body

BY: Laura Pinzón | Neighbors’ Consejo|

Thanksgiving is here, a day next to our family to be grateful for what we received during this year. Next week, #GivingTuesday will be celebrated, a date when we must ask ourselves: What benefits does giving bring for each of us?

As stated by Giving What We Can[1]  “charity can make the world a fairer place, charity helps people who need it and charity can improve your own wellbeing”, this is due mainly for 4 reasons presented in different studies.

The first reason is that “people who help others are happier”, as demonstrated by empirical evidence found by the Association for Psychological Science[2] , according to the way in which the person spends their money they are happy, and their study included even in children. Giving to another is what produces the greatest happiness – “These results suggest that the capacity to derive joy from giving might be a universal feature of human psychology”.

The second reason is found in the Neural Responses to Taxation and Voluntary Giving Reveal Motives for Charitable Donations study[3] , “the benefits of donating can be detected in both the brain and the body.” This was corroborated by the magnetic resonances carried out in patients who, when they donated, activated the “reward part” of the brain, which brought them satisfaction.

The third reason was found by a Princeton University study[4] : “Wealth and happiness do not have a linear relationship.” It concluded “high income buys life satisfaction but not happiness, and that low income is associated both with low life evaluation and low emotional well-being.”

The fourth reason is because “acquiring ever-increasing amounts of wealth has diminishing returns”. This was demonstrated by a study of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America[5].  The list of the benefits we obtain when giving is long and there are many studies that prove it. Giving from the bottom of our hearts to those who need it most, and being thankful for what each one of us has is what #Giving Tuesday is all about. If you want to do so, you just have to join the hashtag #GivingTuesday on social networks where you can find all the information to donate to the different organizations that need a helping hand. Alternatively, you can give to Neighbors’ Consejo, a public charity dedicated to the well-being of the most needy.

References

 [1]https://www.givingwhatwecan.org/post/2021/03/why-should-we-donate-to-charity/#:~:text=This%20article%20covered%20many%20reasons,the%20world%20a%20fairer%20place.

 [2]https://www2.psych.ubc.ca/~schaller/308Readings/Dunn2014.pdf

 [3]https://www.researchgate.net/publication/6267087_Neural_Responses_to_Taxation_and_Voluntary_Giving_Reveal_Motives_for_Charitable_Donations

 [4]https://www.princeton.edu/~deaton/downloads/deaton_kahneman_high_income_improves_evaluation_August2010.pdf

 [5]https://www.pnas.org/content/118/4/e2016976118

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