Volunteering is a wonderful minimalist hobby
Here are some reasons to consider volunteering as your new minimalist hobby:
- It’s free (for you and the organization too)
- You get to meet new people who share your interests.
- Volunteering is an opportunity to do some real good in the world.
- You can develop new skills &/or hone talents you already possess.
- It feels great.
Here are a couple of examples of how great volunteering feels.
My first job after university was working as a coordinator of volunteer services for an agency that helped people who were deaf as well as dually diagnosed with another disability. I had an absolute blast while recruiting volunteers, matching their interests with the clients, and running a weekly social event with the goal of improving our sign language skills in fun environments. The clients loved it, the staff loved it, the volunteers loved it, I loved it. Basically it was a total love festival of win, win, win, win, all around.
More recently, I volunteered with ViDAS.org to assist pets in the recovery room after their spay/neuter surgeries. While living in Mexico for a year, it was impossible not to notice the horrifying condition of many cats and dogs. The malnutrition and disease in so many homeless pets was heartbreaking to witness. It was a great relief to find this group of volunteer veterinarians and to have the opportunity to help to solve the problem of overpopulation. It’s a truly wonderful feeling to know that because we helped, there are many hundreds fewer unwanted pets starving and dying in the streets.
Volunteers help make the world a better place.
Whatever you are passionate about, there is a need for a volunteer. Maybe you want to travel to a foreign land and volunteer with orphans, save the rainforest, protect a species, or build a shelter for a family after a hurricane. Consider doing some good nearby as well. Help out at your local food bank, or plant some native trees in your neighbourhood. Complaining gets us nowhere. It’s satisfying to know that you can actually do something about whatever issue you care about most.
A marvellous person and friend of mine, Jessica Salo, travels to share her love of art with the people she meets in the world. In the process she meets other people who are actively changing the world, she’s learning new languages, and reaping the rewards of her efforts. There is no giving without receiving in return. When you share your keen enthusiasm with others, more gifts flood back to you. I’m not talking about stuff or money. I’m talking about love. You send it out there and people want to give it back and help you in return.
Try it yourself and see how good it feels!
I’ve also written about some other amazing minimalist hobbies that you might enjoy: