A recent study by the Harvard Business School explored the ways in which charitable behavior can lead to benefits for the giver. While the concept that giving to others can make you feel good about yourself is not revolutionary, there are several more subtle ways that giving your money or time for a cause can benefit your psychological, spiritual and emotional well-being.

Here are a few reasons why you should consider giving to your favorite non-profit organization, whether through a lifetime gift or through a Last Will and Testament and/or Trust:

  1. Donations are tax deductible: When you donate to a charitable organization or a non-profit group, the amount you donate is tax deductible.
  2. Giving to charity may improve your sense of well-being: The act of helping others can create an improved sense of well-being. Knowing that you sacrificed something such as time, finances or property in order to help others in need can give you a sense of purpose in life or work and inner satisfaction.
  3. Giving to charity out of spiritual conviction can strengthen your spiritual life: Selfless giving is a key component to many spiritual and religious belief systems. Recognizing that you have taken action in line with your spiritual beliefs by offering your resources to others in need can bring a sense of inner peace and contentment.
  4. Volunteering with a charity may result in physical and social benefits: After donating financially to a charity or non-profit organization, you may feel an inner pull to become more involved with the cause by donating your time and skill as well. By volunteering, you have the opportunity to build your social circles while reaping the physical, mental and spiritual benefits from the labor you contribute to your favorite cause.