Photo by Perry Grone on Unsplash

Helping Others to Help Ourselves: How Giving Back can Help Ease Anxiety

We’ve long been told that being involved in charitable contributions or activities will help us feel better, and put us in the right frame of mind to be of service to others. But how does that directly help ease the symptoms of anxiety?

Currently in the United States, 40 million people suffer from anxiety disorders, making anxiety the most common mental health challenge, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. With such staggering numbers, it can be overwhelming to not only juggle the symptoms, but implement tools and techniques for alleviating those symptoms. However, recent research has shed some light on the correlation between giving back and anxiety relief. Below is a summary of what was discovered.

Helps lower blood pressure and manage stress

Finding passion for where you want to be of service

Feeling a sense of purpose for your contribution

Connecting your story with others

Finding tools for your own recovery and healing

Here are some ideas to get you started, if you’re ready to ease your anxiety through giving back in your community:

  • Join a local animal shelter and help with fostering, adoption events, kennels, and paperwork
  • Find a “Meals on Wheels” program in your area, and offer to deliver meals to people who are struggling with anxiety themselves, and have a hard time leaving their homes
  • Start a small group in your home for monthly meditation or wellness classes to ease stress and share tips on how to deal with anxiety
  • Find a cause you’re truly passionate about, and ask them what kind of help they need at the moment
  • If you’re creative, offer to create fliers, marketing documentation, or write grants for organizations that you’re happy to support
  • Make a list of your favorite non-profits, and make a commitment to offer financial support every month, as much as you’re able
  • Put together small “gift bags” with necessary items that you can hand out in homeless shelters and soup kitchens, or to people you may see on the street
  • Join a gardening club or environmental group, and get involved with cleaning up a street or planting trees in season

No matter what you decide, follow your joy and get involved in any way that makes you comfortable. Giving back doesn’t have to block hours of your time, but the act of helping, even in the smallest way, is a seed well planted for yourself and others.

Original article was published on Anxiety Relief Project. Follow them for latest content, tools, and tips on living with anxiety.

Writer | Yogi | Traveler | Creator of #YogaSouhl (www.aleksslijepcevic.com)

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store