Life gets crazy, and it can be exhausting to squeeze everything on our to-do list or want-to-do list into just 24 hours each day. According to an H&R Block survey, the typical American has fourteen things on their to-do list that they’re putting off! If that sounds like you, we have a surprising solution for you: start volunteering.

Volunteering probably doesn’t sound like the answer to your problems. However, the benefits of volunteering are plentiful. For starters, volunteering can help you progress in your career, raise awareness of causes you care about, gain confidence, and alleviate loneliness. Here’s how.

Progress in Your Career

Try volunteering in a field you’d like to go into. You’ll gain valuable career-specific skills or at least become more comfortable in the field. Maybe you want to go into senior care, for instance. You could volunteer in geriatric care in a convalescent hospital and learn insider information about what skills employers are looking for and what the work environment is like. Plus, you’ll meet people who can give you a recommendation once you’re seeking a new job or promotion.

Campaign for Causes You Care About

Is there a cause you deeply care about? Perhaps animals, education, or voting? Volunteering lets you support a cause you care about and also gives you an opportunity to spread the word. You’ll be able to tell your friends, “I volunteer at the homeless shelter. It’s so rewarding, and here’s why!” Your volunteer work will add an additional level of conviction to your passion, which will help you be a stronger advocate for the cause.

Gain Confidence as You Break out of Your Routine

Serving others boosts your confidence in a way that few things can. Perhaps it’s simply the satisfaction of doing a good deed, whether it’s helping new immigrants learn to read, delivering meals to the homebound, or maintaining a dog park. Regardless of the reason, volunteering gives you a boost in confidence as you break out of your routine, learn new skills, and get out of your comfort zone.

Alleviate Loneliness

Volunteering gets you out of the house and introduces you to others, which by themselves are great benefits. However, it goes beyond that. It causes you to look outside yourself to something bigger. That sense of purpose can give you a feeling of belonging and dispel loneliness that we often feel in this digital age.

The benefits of volunteering transcend what you normally expect. Volunteering can help you progress in your career, raise awareness of causes you care about, gain confidence, and alleviate loneliness. Check out these virtual volunteer opportunities to get started.