The Importance of Volunteering During the Holiday Season

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Happy volunteer family putting their hands togetherVolunteering embodies the holiday spirit. It is a great way to help others who may not otherwise have the means to celebrate.

Of course, it produces the satisfaction that comes with helping others. But there are some benefits that you’ll experience as well. Volunteering is a great thing to do in the holiday season, but it’s also something that can easily be worked into your year-round routine.

 

Below are some of the practical benefits you can experience from volunteering:

Gain Self-Confidence – Most of us feel our strongest sense of achievement through work. Volunteering gives us another outlet for that achievement, and allows us to feel the true fulfillment of being part of something larger than ourselves. This feeling can carry with us into other aspects of our lives.

Expand Your Network – Volunteering allows us to meet new people and expand our networks. This can have both personal and professional benefits, and help us combat loneliness as well. Volunteering is a great way to overcome a feeling of being isolated.

Build a Stronger Community – When you volunteer, you are doing something of value to others. This helps build a stronger community. It also gives you the feeling of being part of something outside your personal and professional life.

Better Personal Health – When individuals volunteer, they often experience better help in later years, greater longevity, higher functional ability, and lower rates of depression. This report from The Corporation for National and Community Service illustrates these benefits in detail.

Friedrich-Jones and Overman-Jones are deeply committed to strengthening the greater Naperville and Plainfield communities. To find out more about our business, contact us at (630) 355-0213 (Naperville) or (815) 436-9221 (Plainfield). You can also visit us at friedrichjones.com.

Offering Condolences – Saying and Doing the Right Thing

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"With deepest sympathy" note with flowers on small chalk board bThere are few times when a loss for words is so common as a funeral or memorial service.

How to respond to another person’s grief, or express your own doesn’t always come naturally.

Unlike other social situations, we aren’t often prepared on the proper words to say and the proper way to act.

Experts suggest avoiding platitudes such as “it’s for the best” or “everything happens for a reason.” While you might think your past experiences and circumstances are similar, try to avoid saying, “I know what you are going through” because often the circumstances are very different.

Instead, it is suggested to go with genuine feelings.

That might mean a simple hug and saying, “I am so sorry for your loss,” according to the life planning site everplans.com. Other phrases that show care might include “you are in my thoughts/prayers” or acknowledging how difficult their circumstances are by saying, “this must be hard for you.”

What people remember and seem to appreciate most during their time of loss and grief is the stories and memories others share that remind them of the deceased and how they were special or how they will be remembered by others, according to the National Funeral Directors Association (NFDA).

The NFDA also says not to underestimate the power of presence and just being there to support a friend or family member in their time of need.

If you are unable to attend services, a note of condolence, a card or special note is often comforting and should express sympathy for their loss, include a brief memory or significant moment if appropriate and a word of comfort.

Funeral directors, including the family and staff at Friedrich-Jones and Overman-Jones Funeral Homes in Naperville and Plainfield, are experienced in proper grief etiquette and can offer guidance in person, as well as through resources and links on their websites. At friedrichjones.com you will find a Grief Support section with a number of ways to express condolences and support to those grieving, at the time of their loss and beyond.

For more information, contact Friedrich-Jones Naperville at 630-355-0213 or Plainfield at 815-436-9221.