Our fellow East Texans need our help. Yes, always--but especially after the year we've had.

Some of us were raised with a core value of giving to others--whether in time, money, or some other resources. It may have been incorporated as a part of a spiritual tradition which may have expanded the concept of giving to tithing. Or maybe it was just something you were taught as an important part of living a good human life.

If you weren't raised with this concept, it may not be something you've given much thought to--understandably. After all, life is busy and often we're doing our best to keep our own lives and bills and homes in order.

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But, there are many benefits to giving. It's a good reminder for us all. When you read the thoughts of some of the greatest people who've ever lived, very often giving and/or service to others is valued. Why? For one thing, when you give of yourself while expecting nothing in return, it changes you. I've found it definitely gives me a much deeper sense of happiness, gratitude, and a sense of fulfillment in life.

When you live your life with a generous heart, somehow, you create a positive dynamic that will in turn inspire the goodwill of others--toward you or generally-speaking. Some studies have shown that helping others can have a positive impact on your health and may even help you live longer.

Other benefits? Giving and serving others in your community can foster friendships and may be one of the best antidotes to some forms of depression. I know it can help keep loneliness at bay. For one thing, it is a great way to realize that we're not alone in the world. Many of us have experienced similar hardships in life and when we work together, it can bond you to others in your life.

Giving also may kindle a spirit of gratefulness in others. So, just by giving of yourself you are helping to make the world a better place. It's also a way of honoring those who have given of themselves to you.

If we all embrace this service and giving-minded philosophy in life, the world becomes a better place.

Looking for a few simple ways to start living a more generous life? Take a look here.

And here:

READ MORE: Here are 10 ways to help others who are struggling right now


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