Living life to inspire others opens an entire world of possibility, allowing any situation or experience to become truly extraordinary. Even tiny, random acts of inspiration hold incredible power and potential when we dare to reach out to others. It has been said that "we are surrounded by infinite amounts of opportunities to inspire other people and bring total joy into our lives at the same time." And therein lies the most remarkable thing—when we seek to live a life that inspires others, we reap incredible benefits for our own lives.
Here are seven quick ways helping others ends up helping you:
Your Courage Strengthens
As one writer so beautifully explained, "Since courage is the ability to take proper action in fear, grief, or pain, we can best help other people succeed through encouragement. By giving others courage, we can change the world."
And when we give courage to others, we strengthen our courage.
By helping others identify the courage within them, we more easily and naturally identify ourselves. On days when you are feeling down or discouraged, help someone else see her courage, and you might discover your own.
Your Relationships Deepen
Whether personal friendships or work partnerships, we deepen our relationships when we seek to inspire others.
One small business newsletter encouraged coworkers to deepen their relationships this way: "Be an encourager by praising the successes of others and by inspiring them to achieve more."
When we look for ways to inspire others, we move past surface-level topics and discussions and talk about things that truly matter. Naturally, this leads to deeper and more productive relationships over the long haul.
And in the end, deeper relationships benefit us as much as they do the other person.
Your Outlook Improves
It's nearly impossible to genuinely take an interest in inspiring someone else while maintaining a sour attitude or negative outlook on life. So just inspiring someone else can improve our perspective on occasion.
Are you having a rough day? Inspire someone and see what happens.
According to The New York Times, "There is no longer any doubt that what happens in the brain influences the body. When facing a health crisis, actively cultivating positive emotions can boost the immune system and counter depression. Studies have shown an indisputable link between having a positive outlook and health benefits like lower blood pressure, less heart disease, better weight control, and healthier blood sugar levels."
Inspiring others to improve their outlook and ours.
Your Joy Increases
An article in The Guardian documented a project called The Joy Initiative, in which a group of people worked together with one objective: to inspire others to live happier lives.
"From simple daily greetings and happy cafés to helping refugees, four people have devoted themselves to bringing more joy to the world."
Ironically—or maybe not ironically—reading the stories of the four people who made it their mission to inspire others revealed that all four had strengthened their purpose and increased their joy.
Joy is truly contagious.
Your Hurts Heal
Something extraordinary happens when we share our stories to inspire others. Author Iyanla Vanzant said it this way, "When you stand and share your story in an empowering way, your story will heal you, and your story will heal somebody else."
No question sharing our own hurt can help others heal theirs.
Sometimes, though, in sharing our stories with others—and in hearing others share their story with us—we realize that the most incredible thing we can do is encourage others to get help. Addiction could be one outcome of poor mental health, and there is always help. Getting help is never a shameful decision. It is courageous and healing.
Sharing your painful experiences with others will give you the chance to heal, even as you seek to help others.
An article from University of California Berkeley said it this way: "Of course, finding purpose is not just an intellectual pursuit; it's something we need to feel. That's why it can grow out of suffering, both our own and others."
Your Purpose Clarifies
If you've ever been stuck in a rut in life, you know how deeply frustrating it can be. One solution?—inspire others to find their purpose. And in doing so, you may find (or strengthen) your own purpose.
One writer at Inc. Magazine explained that she found her purpose by identifying the part of her that needed clarifying, and then she applied it to others. She wrote:
"For me, the biggest emotional challenge of my life has been not feeling seen. Therefore, I realized that helping others see themselves for who they are is my Purpose."
Finding your purpose by helping others find theirs? That's a win/win.
Your Tribe Grows
Simply put, people want to be around inspiring people. As human beings, we're drawn like magnets to people who care for us and want us to succeed.
So when you take the time and spend the effort to care about other people's lives, you will notice that your group of friends naturally begins to grow. People will want to be around you—to enjoy and benefit from your raw enthusiasm for life.
And, quite remarkably—as your group of friends with a similar zeal for life begins to grow—you will also enjoy and benefit from your enthusiasm.
So how do inspiring others change you? It truly changes everything from the inside out in the most remarkable ways. While we don't inspire others to improve our own lives, it sure doesn't hurt that inspiring others can result in tremendous personal benefits.
poramboassociates.com – Inspirational Quotes
thriveglobal.com – Those Who Inspire Us The Most Focus On Courage, Not Motivation
nytimes.com – A Positive Outlook May Be Good for Your Health
theguardian.com – The Joy Initiative: People Who Inspire Others to Live Happier Lives
goodreads.com – Iyanla Vanzant
sunshinebehavioralhealth.com — Laguna Beach's Top Addiction Resource & Information Guide
greatergood.berkeley.edu – How to Find Your Purpose in Life
inc.com– Not Sure What Your Purpose at Work Is? This List Can Help You Spot It