When a bank manager conducts regular staff meetings, she not only talks about business, but also about the importance of being involved in the community. Through her teaching and by practicing what she preaches, what point is she trying to make?
When a couple donates their beautiful, historic home for two months so a charity can overhaul it through interior design and use it for a fundraiser to benefit young, homeless mothers, what's that called?
When a retired nurse dedicates her postcareer free time to acquire and distribute routinely discarded medical supplies to make a difference in the lives of the neediest people in the world, what is she doing?
These people are giving back.
Giving back comes in many forms, like friendly interactions, charities and youth sports organizations, to name a few.
When I played summer amateur baseball during and immediately after my college days, our team had a retired gentleman that not only gave of his time as our coach, but also put in countless hours working on the ball fields so the facilities in that community were looking their best when we would hit the diamond.
If we visited our park earlier on the day of a game, it was a sure bet he would be there watering the infield, chalking the lines, making sure the billboards on the outfield fence were properly attached or maybe even getting the hot dogs ready for that night's concession stand.
The website beliefnet.com states there is a deep wave of grassroots giving back sweeping the country.
Giving back is a great way, first and foremost, to help others and yourself.
Beliefnet.com also offers 10 ways giving back can help you.
■ Your anxiety and depression are eased. By giving back, you experience what's called "helper's high." Usefulness, optimism and meaning helps you stop fixating on your troubles and propels you to confidently make a difference.
■ Your overall health and joy are boosted. Service is powerful medicine. Research shows that teenagers who get turned on by serving others are much happier and more optimistic. They also get better grades and use drugs less.
■ You can connect with a cool community. Service work automatically connects you with an infectious, can-do community of kindred volunteers.
■ You receive greater clarity about your own calling.
■ You enjoy the reward of saving lives.
■ Your job performance improves. People who give back are resourceful, creative - and have incredible staying power on the job.
■ You sharpen your skills and attract employers. Giving back offers great experience, a chance to sharpen or learn new skills, and stay in the game - all increasingly desirable traits to any future employer.
■ You stay hopeful and optimistic.
■ You gain appreciation for other people and places.
■ You connect with what it means to be human.