Lending a helping hand to others when they are in need often leaves us feeling great. But that is not just a feeling- in fact, it is scientifically proven.
In an article titled “10 Facts That Prove Helping Others Is A Key To Achieving Happiness” by the Huffington Post, it states that studies show that when we help others our mesolimbic system (the part of our brains that are accountable for feelings of reward) is triggered.
When this happens the brain releases “feel-good chemicals and spurs you to perform more kind acts“. But one mother shared a story that’s not just about the giving, but about the receiving as well.
It’s important to keep the balance of giving and taking.
When this mother’s lesson was posted on Reddit the post quickly started a conversation which made many reevaluate their beliefs on give and take.
The story is about a mother who one day asks her neighbor to borrow some salt, but when her child overheard their mother doing this, they questioned her as to why she asked them when they have more than enough salt in their home.
Her answer is what gets everyone to rethink what they know about sharing and asking for things.
Keeping the balance helps one another in more ways than one.
When she explains to her child that since they are always asking them for things, in return she thought she’d ask for something small so she didn’t burden them but still made them feel needed and valued. She states,
“So, I thought I’d ask something small from them so as not burden them, but at the same time make them feel as if we need them too. That way it’ll be easier for them to ask us for anything they need from us.”
As the post gained more and more comments, each person had a different perspective to share.
When balance helps both parties retain their dignity and humanity.
One user on Reddit comments back that as being someone who grew up poor they can empathize with knowing the pride and fear of becoming a burden to those around them helping them.
So, how they balanced this give and take without the burden was in exchange for whatever they needed- they would help the family with something they needed which in the end helped both retain their dignity and humanity.
Now that they’re grown, they continue to do the same with people struggling in their community now. This makes it easier to accept the help and they note again that it helps “both of us to retain our fullest sense of humanity”.
Dignity is everything.
Another user notes just how much we as humans value our dignity and pride. And that sometimes we forget that is what truly pains us the most when we find ourselves struggling to take care of ourselves and loved ones.
The simplest stories sometimes contain the biggest life lessons.
More and more users began commenting stating how they need to start doing this more often. Sometimes all it takes is a simple story that helps us realize a truly bigger life lesson that may have been otherwise unnoticeable day to day.
This kind of empathy helps us build our relationships with one another and makes our communities stronger.
Others noted how empathy is something that is in such short supply these days but yet so important to pass on to everyone. One user writes about the importance empathy has on developing connections with others,
“It’s supremely important for building relationships and communities and not just showing that we care about each other, but taking real action to make those thoughts and what we speak a genuine reality.”
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As of now, the Reddit post has now gathered over 720 comments. All sharing their thoughts, experiences, and new understandings from this simple lesson that was shared.
Little did this mother know at the time how big of an impact her actions and story would make not only on her child but on every person who hears and shares it. We are grateful to have heard it and now able to share it once more.
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