2 mins

Psychological benefits of giving to others and thinking of others

Do you ever get that warm feeling when you’ve done a good deed? Or when you’ve given someone a gift they really value and cherish?
Research indicates that giving to others is psychologically beneficial to us. Neuroimaging studies have found that the areas of the brain that are associated with pleasure and reward and become activated when we do things like eat or have sex, also become activated when we give to others. So this makes us feel good.

When we give to others or think about others, this also helps us to connect more with other people. Social connection and having meaningful relationships with people is associated with improved mental and physical health. Conversely, difficulties such as depression and. Anxiety are characterised by self-focused preoccupation. Focusing our attention away from ourselves and onto others may help to reduce this.

Thinking of others may also help us to gain a different perspective on our own situation, and as previously said, giving to others may help us to feel better by activating the pleasure and reward systems in our brains. This in itself may help to improve our mental health.

Giving to others makes us more likely to receive:
If giving to others and thinking of others is helpful with our own social connections , then we could assume that giving may make us more likely to receive; kindness begets kindness and as such giving to others may motivate others to give too, which could mean the giver is also likely to also receive. In addition to this, having meaningful connections with others will help to support our own physical and mental health, which is probably the best gift of all.

Dr Elena Touroni

Dr Elena Touroni

23 December 2016

"Dr. Elena Touroni is a skilled and experienced Consultant Psychologist with a track record of delivering high-quality services for individuals with all common emotional difficulties and those with a diagnosis of personality disorder. She is experienced in service design and delivery, the management of multi-disciplinary teams, organisational consultancy, and development and delivery of both national and bespoke training to providers in the statutory and non-statutory sector."

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Athena Lazaridou

Athena is a Pilates instructor with 8 years’ experience in the field. After completing a Power Pilates Mat Certification in Athens, she went on to complete the Full Comprehensive Classical Pilates Certification with Equinox in Kensington.  She has been teaching Pilates at Equinox for the past 6 years in addition to her own private clients who she trains both face to face and virtually.

Athena has a passion for helping people get stronger and fitter as well as helping those recovering from injury regain their strength and mobility.  Over the years, she has worked with athletes to incorporate Pilates into their training and improve performance. Athena has also worked with prenatal and postnatal women who may be experiencing depression or other mental health difficulties and used Pilates to facilitate a positive impact on their mental health.

Athena is very passionate about improving physical and mental well-being and has recently incorporated Sound Healing into her work, as she believes it to be one of the best ways of ‘letting go’ and releasing stale energy whilst increasing greater self-awareness.