Generous people are often described as the big losers in modern societies of the West, where individualism and the search for pleasure for oneself prevail.
This, which is based on an element of truth, is a distortion of reality, as being generous is also rewarded with a number of advantages, both physical and psychological.
The benefits of being generous
And is that, contrary to what one might think, pure selfishness also leaves certain blind spots through which problems and adversities can attack: the instability of relationships, the relative lack of support systems and a lack of support. strong community that serves as protection, etc.
Then we will see some benefits that generous people are the first to enjoy.
1. They have better mental health
When the demands of caring for others are not very demanding in terms of time and effort, altruism is correlated with a greater propensity to enjoy good mental health. Behind this could be the psychological repercussions of knowing that you are useful to others who need it.
2. They can feel better with less
Unlike selfish people, who need material rewards in return for their efforts to feel good, generous people they are able to feel good just by performing altruistic tasks, Which they can perform whenever they wish because they are entirely up to them. Having been involved in these tasks, many of them feel physically energized, less in pain and stress, and have a better self-image, which impacts all areas of their lives.
3. Affection helps young people grow better
It has long been known that caregivers who, in addition to caring for children and adolescents with “mandatory” formal care such as food, water, and a place to sleep, they are much more likely to surround themselves with offspring who can care for them in old age. Indeed, with the creation of bonds of affection, the capacity of young people to feel affection for others also appears.
4. Easily create trusted networks
The hormone oxytocin, which is linked to generous and altruistic behaviors, is also associated with building bridges of mutual trust, which can be very useful in developing ambitious and expensive projects that can only be achieved if several people are involved. They agree and collaborate for a long time. This means that generous people will be a little more likely to devote their efforts to ensuring that projects that have long-term goals achieve their goal.
5. They can become the most visible part of the community
Generous people are able to selflessly give for long periods of time whether or not there are prizes or rewards related to extrinsic motivation. This means that they are able to make others see them as generous at the same time, rather than sequentially: there are times when a lot of people have benefited from the help of this type of profile without giving it what. whether concrete in exchange.
In this way, it often happens that the members of a community, seeing that everyone considers that there is someone particularly generous, the public image of this person reaches a new level, which is often linked to a protective role and therefore of authority.
6. They are further away from depression in the elderly
People over 65 who volunteer to help others are less likely to develop depression, thanks to the social integration these tasks produce. This is very useful, as self-concept and self-image can decline with old age if retirement is interpreted as a sign that it is no longer useful to anyone.
7. They can focus more on positive thoughts
Generous people are more likely to help others in a selfless way, the quaIt creates a climate of positivity and a certain optimism.. This makes them more exposed to situations where the emphasis is on upbeat and cheerful ideas, which is helpful in staying at good levels of well-being.
8. Propensity for greater longevity?
Again studies on the longevity of caring people still need to be doneYes, a tendency to focus on positive ideas and affect-based behaviors has been shown to increase longevity and is associated with a stronger immune system.
- Musick, MA and Wilson, J. (2003). volunteering and depression: the role of psychological and social resources in different age groups. Social Sciences and Medicine, 56 (2), pages 259-269.
- Post, SG (2005). Altruism, happiness and health: it’s good to be good. International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, 12 (2), pages 66-77.
- Schwartz, C., Meisenhelder, JB, Ma, Y., and Reed, G. (2003). Altruistic social interest behaviors are associated with better mental health. Psychosomatic Medicine, 65, pages 778 to 785.
- Zack, PJ, Kurzban, R. and Matzner, WT Oxytocin is associated with human confidence. Hormones and Behavior, 48 (5), pages 522-527.