Giving, philanthropy, humanitarianism, and performing altruistic acts create fulfillment and boost our performance levels.

2013 is the year when progress in engagement and fulfillment levels at work MUST increase. A recent study shows that ninety percent of people are unfulfilled at work, yet the best way to boost fulfillment at work is to encourage altruism and generosity, as Simon Sinek, the author of Start With Why, suggests.

Studies show that fulfillment comes from adding value to others. If we are willing to give to the person next to us, it’s amazing what they are willing to give to us! A long line of research, including a recent study of over 2,000 people, showed that acts of altruism decreased stress and strongly contributed to enhanced mental health. So if you want to be healthier, happier, and have less stress, GIVE!

There was a recent study of forty-six people who were all given twenty dollars. Half were asked to spend the money on themselves, and the other half was asked to spend the money on other people, maybe giving it to charity, taking someone deserved out to lunch, or just spending it on an experience for someone else. This study showed that the people who spent it on themselves were not as happy and not as energetic as the ones that gave to others.

What this study shows is that when we give, it ignites our self worth to humanity and connects our hearts, which, in turn, allows us to feel good about the act and about ourselves, thus overflowing into our daily working experience.

Doing altruistic or generous acts boosts our happiness and performance levels as we gain stimulation and a sense of achievement with something greater than ourselves.

My wife and I have just returned from working with, truly, the poorest of the poor. Our foundation educates, feeds, clothes, and transforms villages of the poorest people in the world and children living with disabilities in developing worlds, as they are often outcast from their own families. What we have found is that not only have we become more driven and motivated from seeing that we are helping these children, but the community members have been inspired to take action and are now working with us in helping these less fortunate kids.

Altruistic acts are not necessarily starting a foundation, but it can be as simple as opening the door for someone else, treating someone to lunch, or, one of my favorites, driving through McDonald’s with our kids and paying for the car’s meal behind us. (We are all so excited about doing this that it boosts our energy and happiness levels in our car.)

What are you doing right now within your life to ignite you and the people around you to think about adding value to others, thus boosting high performance within your life?

I suggest there are three things to focus on:

1. Connect the business core story to your core story to maximize engagement.
2. Look at ways you can volunteer (for a charity of choice).
3. Include a “fulfillment” clause in your value or mission statement.

Life after death is a subject most of us will never live to tell. Sam Cawthorn is one of the remarkable few who did. In October 2006, Sam’s life changed forever when he was involved in a major car accident and pronounced DEAD. He was thankfully resuscitated, but left with an amputated right arm and a permanent disability in his right leg. Sam’s simple and inspiring story demonstrates the awesome power and strength found within the human spirit when faced with the choice to continue living as a victim of a tragic accident or seizing the opportunity of life. Learn more about Sam and his incredible story on his website or follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

*Photo Credit: via Compfight cc