Helping others increases social wellbeing and comes in many forms. It can be as simple as giving up your seat to someone on public transport, making a donation to someone on the street and other small acts of kindness, to volunteering or helping out a friend.
Head to Health points out some of benefits of volunteering, such as:
Developing stronger social networks and friendships
Becoming more active, mentally and physically
Reducing stress and anxiety
Learning new skills
Increasing your chances of getting work
If you want to volunteer but don’t know where to start, check out the 7,100 opportunities on the Volunteer Website.
Gus Worland, founder of Gotcha 4 Life started his foundation in 2016 to bring awareness to men’s mental health and promote the idea that every man should have one mate they can talk to.
“We’re not talking about a mate that you go to the pub and watch the footy with because we’ve got lots of people like that ... but you’ve just got to have someone in your life that you can ring up and say ‘hey things are just starting to get a bit tough’,” he said.
“There’s no b.s. when you have that discussion. It’s a proper, honest discussion about how you truly feel about things that are really important.”
There are many ways to get involved with Gotcha4Life, from making a donation and fundraising to volunteering.
Mr Perfect, started by Terry Cornick, is the barbecue revolution connecting Aussie men across the land, or at least wherever there’s a public and well-functioning BBQ. You can join a BBQ meet-up or start one of your own. Find out how.
At the Men’s Health Connected summit in June 2020, organised by the Australian Men’s Health Forum, several sessions were dedicated to ‘Men Who Care.’ The online summit celebrated and shared the way men access caring as a social role and profession, featuring Greg Smith, who has devoted his time to caring for his mother and providing resources and support to other blokes in unpaid, informal caring roles. Connect with Greg. (PS, He also runs a Man Walk in Ulverstone, Tasmania).
The Banksia Project trains volunteer facilitators to run Growth Rooms, which provide a supportive community for anyone going through life’s challenges. These Rooms give participants lifestyle tips, and Facilitators undergo a one-day training course. They are also trained in Mental Health First Aid and taught to understand their own health and wellness. Find out more about Banksia Project’s Facilitator program.
These are just a few ideas on how to become a legend, simply by helping others.
As the Chinese saying goes: “If you want happiness for an hour, take a nap. If you want happiness for a day, go fishing. If you want happiness for a year, inherit a fortune. If you want happiness for a lifetime, help somebody.”
TIPS FROM THE TOP
The Australian Men's Health Forum surveyed men for World Mental Health Month 2020 on the 10 Habits of Mentally Healthy Men. 92% agreed that helping others helped them stay mentally healthy. Here's what some of them had to say:
Keeps one from dwelling on personal issues.
Assisting others to bliss creates your own energy and excitement.
If you want a friend, be a friend.
It is a blessing to be a blessing to others.
Focusing on other's needs for a time being expands my small world.