Want to be Happier? (Give More)

I recently read an article in Time Magazine that measured happiness in people and discovered that even thinking about doing something generous has real mood-boosting benefits in the brain.

“In a new study published in Nature Communications, researchers from the University of Zurich in Switzerland told 50 people they’d be receiving about $100 over a few weeks. Half of the people were asked to commit to spending that money on themselves, and half were asked to spend it on someone they knew. Those who had agreed to spend money on other people tended to make more generous decisions throughout the experiment, compared to those who had agreed to spend on themselves. They also had more interaction between the parts of the brain associated with altruism and happiness, and they reported higher levels of happiness after the experiment was over.”

It’s what we knew all along, but seeing actual scientific research is compelling. When you are more generous, you are a happier person. The jolt of feel-good energy we get when we’re kind to other people is real. Witnessing the effects of your own generosity makes you feel more alive. It’s why philanthropy is so important. We are all connected and when we transfer the energy of generosity, its magnitude is amplified and returned to us.

Give on. Be happy.