Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Sharing My Passion Leads to Happiness

Volunteering can make a difference in your life and the lives of those you are serving. Shelbey, is one of our amazing piano instructors, here is her experience:

"One day, I realized that I hardly ever did anything for anyone else. Sure, I try to help my husband and family, but that is so basic and so easy. As for helping my community...I felt like a waste of space and air.

To combat the self-loathing, I started looking for volunteer opportunities and the expected things popped up--working with the elderly and special needs children--the two types of people I'm really awkward around, because I have no experience with either one. But I knew they needed willing people, so I took a deep breath and starting sending emails.

Suddenly, I had anxiety. I was not looking forward to these opportunities. I begged my husband to do it with me just so I wouldn't be alone every week. I knew this would turn out to be one of those things I dread... And I was certain I'd end up dropping out.

I decided that if I wanted to give service with longevity, I needed to do something that I felt comfortable with. There are plenty of angels on earth to help with the elderly and special needs, but I felt as if my life had prepared me for a different kind of service.

Enter United Way. Through BYU's service website, I found that United Way was looking for music teachers for children who might not be able to have music lessons otherwise.

Children + teaching + music. Now THAT was what I was looking for! I signed up and started teaching this past September.

It has been more rewarding than I could ever imagine. I spend an hour and a half once a week teaching three adorable children piano or singing. In addition to growing my own music skills by teaching others, I've made friends with the children and their parents--something I certainly didn't expect. We laugh, we learn, and we make music.

Shelbey's students attended a play she was in.

What I've learned is that it's okay if service doesn't feel like service; it can be outright fun! Think about what you're passionate about and find out how you can teach that passion to others; that's the recipe for one type of meaningful service. It might be with United Way or it might not, but get out there and do it!"

We would like to encourage you to find a cause or something that interests you and get involved in your community! 

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