What’s the one thing you can do to help achieve all your other New Year’s resolutions?
That’s right. Volunteering can help all of us live better lives and achieve the most common New Year’s resolutions: exercise, eat better, make new friends, or learn a new skill (or get a new job or find a new hobby).
For example, even if you aren’t a fan of physical exercise, you can get your heart pumping by raking leaves or shoveling snow for neighbors in need, or by leading a children’s field day. And, just like exercise does more than burn calories and build strength, research shows that pitching in regularly can decrease your stress and lower your blood pressure.
Trying something new by volunteering can be good for your heart and brain. Research has found that people who complained of major boredom were about twice as likely to die from heart disease. Learning a new skill can boost memory and more. Some organizations offer training or continuing education to their volunteers. So why not try something you’ve never done before, or expand your leadership ability by stepping up to manage a volunteer project?
Expanding your social circle can start where your heart is. What do you love? Can you share that passion with others to advance the common good? If math or reading are your thing, volunteering at a school to help tutor children, for example, will help you form new, healthy connections with kids and adults alike.
If your one resolution is to volunteer, how do you keep it? Start your New Year right by signing up today to volunteer on January 20, 2020, the Martin Luther King Day of Service. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the day of service that celebrates the civil rights leader's life and legacy. It’s a great way to jumpstart your resolutions early and get a taste of an activity and organization you might like to do more with throughout the year. Your local United Way can direct you to MLK Day activities in your area.
Finding the right volunteer opportunity can make it so much easier to meet your goals in the New Year. United Way is here to help you do it.