Volunteering – deliberately giving of your energy and time (and in many cases, your cash) to something that you’re convinced matters – is critical to finding meaning in your life.
But let us be clear. I do not speak here of charitable giving by itself. That is hugely important (you could even call it “financial volunteering”). but I think there’s one significant difference between giving money and other forms of volunteering: sending money usually does not demand your actual bodily presence.
And that is what I find particularly special about volunteering.
You see, it’s not just about feeling sympathy for the cause. It’s more than wanting to get involved somehow. It goes beyond sending something to help. It’s about being there, in person, on site, getting your hands dirty – at least, figuratively.
So giving is great, and by all means please keep giving. We need your money. But even more than that, we need you.
And you know the best thing about that? When you volunteer in person, you’ll happen upon a beautiful paradox: you’re most useful to the world when you throw yourself into your corner of it.
And that’s the volunteer’s secret to saving the world. You can’t do everything, but you can do something that matters.
P.S. I wonder: what would it be like if we introduced ourselves not by what we get paid to do, but by how we volunteer? I’d say, “Hi, I’m Ayomide, and I’m passionate about equipping teens with resources to navigate their way to meaningful adulthood. What do you do?” Share your passion by leaving a comment!
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