Helping Others: Is There Anything In It For Me?
A NOTE FROM DR. RICK
Helping Others: Is There Anything In It For Me?
|Helping Others: Is There Anything In It For Me?|
Have you ever had the privilege of helping someone who could not help themselves? What did it feel like to help that person? Remember a time being with a good friend or a significant other? We tend to have a warm connection, and want that person to not hurt but truly be happy. Have you had a time of not feeling cared about by someone? The feeling that you didn’t really matter to someone you cared about. Maybe these hurts weren’t overtly blowing you off, but they were not going out of their way to see how you were doing or showing care the way you would hope they would.
As soon as we recall a time like this, it becomes immediately clear why it’s important to feel cared for by someone and to show compassion towards others. There are advantages to being cared about and for caring for others. Studies show that feeling cared about buffers against stress, increases positive emotions, promotes resilience, and increases the desire to even care more for others. And over time, feeling cared about now can help comfort your lonely heart.
When we admit the desire to feel cared about it can bring up positive feelings from or past. Those feelings are real, and they’re based on real things.
When we care for another person it can be both incredibly draining and amazingly rewarding. Most research on caregiving has focused on the benefits to the person receiving care, but an emerging body of research suggests that—under the right circumstances—providing support also benefits caregivers.
There’s often an assumption that the person who receives care reaps the benefits at the expense of the person providing care. Previous research has shown that caregiving is often associated with increased stress—both emotional and financial.
However, University of Pittsburgh psychological scientists Tristen K. Inagaki and Edward Orehek have identified two factors that can determine whether providing support might also benefit the caregiver as well when providing care is a choice and when support is perceived to be effective. There is also growing body of evidence that providing support can also be beneficial; leading to reduced stress, increased happiness, and an increased sense of social connectedness.
When we write a supportive note to a friend in need we benefit by a reduction in stress. Giving a gift to someone else has been linked to an increased self-esteem, self-worth, and feelings of social connection with that person. It more blessed to give than to receive? Why anyone would not chose to do this? Give it a try. You will glad you did.
By all these things, I have shown you that by working in this way we must help the weak, and remember the words of the Lord Jesus that he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ (Acts 20:35)
Quiz: Are You Taking Care Or Caretaking?
|Quiz: Are You Taking Care Or Caretaking?|
Although composed of the same two words, taking care and caretaking are vastly different in practice. Taking care is healthy caregiving—whether for children, spouses, friends or parents—that includes drawing appropriate boundaries, taking your own needs into consideration and knowing when to say no. Caretaking, on the other hand, is about rescuing, constantly placing others’ needs before your own and taking inappropriate responsibility for others’ emotions and actions.
The difference is in the intention: Are you in service (taking care) or is there a payoff (caretaking)? Payoffs are usually subtle. Caretaking may help you relieve guilt, feel better about yourself, or get attention or validation. But there is a cost to caretaking, as well:
Caretaking can result in resentments, emotional and physical depletion, and/or feeling disconnected from your inner self. Complete this questionnaire to discover how much caretaking you do.
1. I feel safer when giving rather than receiving.
2. I am “on call” to friends with problems at any hour of the day or night.
3. I’m great at being nurturing and compassionate with others, but not so good at giving these qualities to myself.
4. I feel responsible for others’ thoughts, feelings, behaviors, problems, choices, well-being, health and destiny.
5. It’s more important to me to please other people than to please myself.
6. I hate to see others feeling sad or angry or jealous; I try to fix the situation so that they don’t feel bad any more.
7. I prefer to focus on the needs of others; if I focus on my own emotions and needs, I feel selfish and afraid that the other person won’t want to be around me.
8. I take care of other people by fixing their flaws for them. I just want to help them be the best they can be.
9. I feel unappreciated much of the time. I give and give and give, and no one ever notices or gives anything back.
10. I feel controlled by the needs of others, yet my needs are never met.
11. I often give unsolicited advice. I really want to help others see the light.
12. I give away my energy to others in order to be loved and accepted.
13. I grow resentful when others are not willing to “give” like I do.
14. I see other people as the source of my problems.
15. I don’t really know what I need and want—but I always know what other people need, want and should do.
16. I don’t wait to be asked—if I see that someone needs me, I just jump right in and help.
17. I’m often exhausted from taking care of everyone around me.
18. I’ve always been the Giver in my relationships.
It can be hard to differentiate between helping that truly helps and helping that actually harms. You may find that detaching with love is the most helpful approach. You can still love people without needing to fix them. More True answers than False may indicate that you need support with self-care. If you have questions about caretaking or any other matter, please don’t hesitate to call.
With all of these changes our team at Compass Consulting & Affiliates LLC has made a BIG change. We have MOVED into larger offices approximately 1/2 mile from our other location. We now have at our new facilitates the ability to facilitate continued group therapy, conferences and educational classes to assist in our counseling and teaching support services. We have grown these past few years and our desire is to serve you as effectively as we can. We look forward to serving you in this beautiful facility.
1010 Huntcliff Suite 1210
North Sandy Springs, GA 30350
Take A Look At What’s Happening At Compass
- DUI treatment programs and Clinical Evaluations are state approved for court ordered treatment. Allow us to help you. We also do Interventions for those struggling to get help. Call today: 678-395-7922
- Individual, Relationship, & Child Counseling
- Choices: Drug & Alcohol Court Ordered Group- Meets weekly. We also work with your probation officer. DUI, possession charges, and other issues arising from substance abuse.
- Challenges Adolescent GroupMeets weekly. Now forming for Spring 2019.
- Man ALIVE Now forming. If you are interested in joining a men’s group please contact our office for more information.
- Anger Management Classes
- Diversion Classes For Shop Lifting & Thief Prevention
- Drug ScreeningAlso available on site and home kits
- Relapse Prevention & Early Intervention Program
- Substance Abuse Interventions for your loved ones
- Adolescent Girls Group Now forming. Charity & Bethany are offering a 4-week intensive for adolescence. This is a focused group which will be held to a very limited number of teen girls. Give them a call about how to sign up your teen.
- Counseling for drug and alcohol issues. We treat both the addicted loved one as well as the battle weary family. We are here for you.
- Executive Coaching is also available for the busy professional, who seems to never have time.