I Always Wanted To Be Rich
Hi you, hopefully, I didn't upset you with my title. But I kinda do want to be rich. I have been so jealous of Bill Gates, Oprah, The Obama's and Elton John. What do these have in common? They have given a significant percentage of their income to charity and hopefully made a difference in doing that.
The whole reason, for me, becoming a psychologist is to help people and make a difference in their lives. I'm not rich moneywise perse, but I am pretty rich in friends, family, and partner (only one, but you know what I mean), health, and goals in life. But money, I wouldn't call myself rich. I know wealth is relative, and if I compared myself to less fortunate ones, I would have a different perspective.
Having said that, we can all agree I am not as rich as the people I described above. But instead of thinking negatively and feeling I can't give back, I decided to brainstorm about what I can do.
"if you want to receive something in life, start by giving it to others."
Giving makes us feel happy
A 2006 study at the National Institute of Health found that it activates specific brain regions when people give to other people or charities. These regions (associated with pleasure, social connection, and trust) create that "warm glow" feeling. It's like cuddling a puppy! But giving does actually generate the chemical oxytocin in our brain, commonly known as the love hormone.
Good things happen to good people
Okay, maybe it doesn't always feel like this. But in the end, it kinda proves itself that it does! I always say, "if you want to receive something in life, start by giving it to others." This may relate to trust, love, or kindness. Whatever applies to you!
Several studies, including sociologists Brent Simpson and Robb Willer, have suggested that your generosity is likely to be rewarded by others down the line when you give to others. Sometimes by the person you gave to, sometimes by someone else.
There is even more! When we give to others, we make those people feel closer to us, and we feel closer to them. Ahw, so many happy, feel-good feelings, just by giving!
In addition to making yourself happy with giving, you also make other people happy. Not only by giving them things, your time, or kindness. Your giving spirit appears to be contagious.
A study by James Fowler of the University of California, San Diego, and Nicholas Christakis of Harvard, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, shows that when one person behaves generously, it inspires others to act generously later, toward different people. In fact, the researchers found that altruism could spread by three degrees. From person to person to person to person. "As a result," they write, "each person in a network can influence dozens or even hundreds of people, some of whom he or she does not know and has not met." That's pretty cool, I reckon.
If you want to make the world a better place, start with yourself and what you can do!
What can I do
Back at the start of this article, I said I want to be rich. Hopefully, now you know I mean it in a way so I can give money to charity. I've never done it too much because I was afraid that most money would go to managers and not the charity. And hey, that still may be the case, but I can't change that. I can be kind to people in my everyday life, try to decrease my carbon footprint, and be a good person in general. As a business, I want to do all these things but a little bit more...
A charity page!
I've started a charity page this month on my website (check it out here). This means for every client or assignment I get, I'll donate one dollar to a charity of their choice. It doesn't sound much, won't be much for a while, but it will make me feel really good.
Have a look at the Charity Page if you're curious which charities have already been donated to. And maybe, when we will meet professionally, have a think about what charity you would like me to contribute to in your name!