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2018-06-04 Issue 50 Fundamental Behavior 23 Give Back
Humor me for a few minutes. Pretend for a minute that you feel terrible. Pretend you are 30 pounds overweight, have high blood pressure, lack energy, feel depressed, and generally have low self-esteem. Now pretend your _____ (spouse, significant other, mom, dad, brother, sister) is worried about you. They bother you for weeks to go see a doctor, so you finally go. Now pretend the doctor has a cure for all of your problems. He says he has a treatment that will help you lose the weight, lower that blood pressure, relieve the depression, and make you feel great again. The treatment takes two hours a week, but is covered by your insurance. Would you take the treatment? Would you follow your doctor’s advice? What if I said there were two side effects, 1) it is addictive, and 2) it gives you a consistent feeling of peace and joy?
The treatment is, of course, giving back. Science has proven that giving, whether it is money, or time, or other resources, ‘pays’ the giver tremendous dividends. Giving back activates the brain’s mesolimbic system, which is the same reward and pleasure center that is activated by food, drugs, and, yes, sex. Giving is not a drug, but it produces the happy chemicals in your brain.
YKK’s philosophy is grounded in the principle of ‘giving back,’ which is both powerful and tremendous. I feel fortunate to be part of a company that recognizes this value. This Fundamental Behavior provides some additionally helpful guidance on that principle. Specifically, that giving back is an appropriate way to express your gratitude for the help you have been given in the past. All of us have received support, guidance, opportunities, and love in the past, and we are all grateful for those who have given those things to us. Spend a few minutes thinking about those people and what they did. I hope that it will elicit some feeling of gratitude. Now, spend a few minutes thinking about what you can do now, either alone, or with you team, to assist someone in need.
Once you start giving back, you will get that giver’s ‘high’ and will likely chase that feeling the rest of your life. I hope you do. If I have not inspired you enough, please check out this video highlighting some of the region’s community service activities from last year at http://ykknorthamerica.com/the-ykk-difference/corporate-social-responsibility/community-service/.
YKK Corporation of America