26th December 2012 (Boxing Day)
Today in the UK is Boxing Day.... the day after Christmas. But why is it called Boxing Day? Do you know? I didn't so, I used the amazing font of all knowledge, that’s right Google !
This is what it said;
The exact etymology of the term "boxing" is unclear. There are several competing theories, none of which is definitive. The European tradition, which has long included giving money and other gifts to those who were needy and in service positions, has been dated to the Middle Ages, but the exact origin is unknown. It may come from a custom in the late Roman/early Christian era, wherein metal boxes placed outside churches were used to collect special offerings tied to the Feast of Saint Stephen, which in the Western Church falls on the same day as Boxing Day.
In Britain, it was a custom for tradesmen to collect "Christmas boxes" of money or presents on the first weekday after Christmas as thanks for good service throughout the year. This is mentioned in Samuel Pepys' diary entry for 19 December 1663. This custom is linked to an older English tradition: Since they would have to wait on their masters on Christmas Day, the servants of the wealthy were allowed the next day to visit their families. The employers would give each servant a box to take home containing gifts and bonuses, and sometimes leftover food.
So this got me thinking since the day is about giving and we are moving towards the best 2013, could one of your goals be about contribution? What can you give over the next year, have fun and enjoy the process. Now it might not be money, it may be time, or it may be donating clothes you haven’t worn for a while or contributing your expertise to a local project. How about mentoring a young person, visiting someone who finds it difficult to get out or being a school governor or investing in a social enterprise?
As we mentioned on Christmas Eve, Brian Johnstone said that “Getting is a by-product of Giving”, so perhaps on this Boxing Day you could decide that one of your goals for 2013 is about contribution. There is of course real benefits to volunteering, here’s just a few
- Develop new skills. Gaining skills, knowledge and expertise are common side effects of volunteering. Giving others your time brings you interesting and challenging opportunities that might not come along otherwise.
- Make social connections. Its a great way to meet people out of your social circle.
- Give back to your community. Doing something for the community you live in and returning the favour to those who have helped you are strong motivators. Everyone, rich or poor, takes from society, and volunteering is one way to show a sense of appreciation.
- Develop and grow as a person. Volunteering is an excellent way to explore your likes and dislikes. If you’re interested in a new career, volunteer in the field first to see if you will actually like it. You may find a totally unrelated field is a much better fit for you, one you’d never consider if you hadn’t volunteered there first.
- Gain a new perspective. Volunteering could help you see the world in a completely different light.
- Know that you're needed. Feeling needed and appreciated are important, and you may not get that appreciation from your paid work or home life where the things you do are expected or taken for granted. When you volunteer, you realise just how much you are truly needed. Meeting people who need your help is a strong incentive to continue—people are depending on you. If you don’t do it, who will?
- Boost your self-esteem. Many volunteers experience a sense of increased self-esteem and greater self-worth. Helping others makes you feel good about yourself, because you’re doing something for someone that they couldn't do for themselves.
(follow me on twitter @stevekellyuk or email me firstname.lastname@example.org)
By the way thanks Santa for my fantastic family, friends and blog followers