Love Each Other
Posted on 13 February 2017
Love Each Other
People always say "it's better to give than to receive". I know that when I heard this when I was a kid, I thought this was a very weird thing to say. I just loved getting presents. Still do. I couldn't imagine how it could EVER be better to give someone else something. But years later, it all makes sense.
And, it's been scientifically proven. A 2008 study by Harvard Business School professor Michael Norton and his colleagues found that giving money to someone else lifted participants’ happiness levels more that spending it on themselves. Giving has also been linked to the release of oxytocin, a hormone that induces feelings of warmth, euphoria, and connection to others.
Our society has become a bit fixated on getting. We're so obsessed with buying bigger and better and more. Somehow we think it's going to make us happier to have that bigger house, newer car, or another pretty pair of shoes. We're all a bit self-absorbed. "Maybe I will be happier / more successful if I fix my wonky nose, plump my lips, get a boob job..."
We all want to be happy. And Valentine's Day is one of those times of the year when there's a lot of pressure to be happy.
Regardless of your relationship status this 14th February, we believe you can have the happiest Valentine's Day. Join us in our #ValentinesChallenge and spread a little love to people around you, and watch how not only does it make them feel loved, but it will make you feel those warm fuzzy feels. There are so many people we come into contact with, be it friends and family, people we work with, or random strangers in the street or at the shops. What if we each do a small act of kindness to help people to feel loved?
Even more fascinatingly, giving, and being generous is contagious. A study by Nicholas Christakis of Harvard and James Fowler of the University of California, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, found that when one person behaves generously, it inspires observers to behave generously later, toward different people. “As a result,” they write, “each person in a network can influence dozens or even hundreds of people, some of whom he or she does not know and has not met.”
So your random kind deed can have a massive knock-on effect. And isn't that what the world needs this 14th February?
- Buy a coffee and a cake for a homeless person
- Bake some treats for your work colleagues
- Find opportunities to give compliments. It costs nothing, takes no time, and could make someone’s entire day.
- Send a surprise gift to a friend.
- Offer to go shopping for an elderly person you may know
- Spend time with someone you know who is on their own
- Send a love letter - write a letter to someone in your family or a friend to let them know how much they mean to you
- If you hear people gossiping about someone, be the person to weigh in with something nice instead.
- Post a chocolate bar and a little note through your neighbours' letter boxes
- Pay for the shopping of the person behind you at the supermarket
- Invite someone over for dinner and cook a meal for them
- Leave a big tip when out dining
- Be extra nice to that person at work who annoys you / you don't get along with
- Make someone a CD of music you think they'd like and post it to them
- Call your parents
- Send flowers to someone you know, for no reason at all.
Document yourself, and share via social media with the hashtags #valentineschallenge and #lovelawrenson. If you like, tag us so we can see (we will retweet / share our favourites!)