Author: Danny Swersky

Daniel Swersky

Personal Development Techniques

Danny Swersky

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with recognizing your own faults. It’s even better when that’s followed up by a commitment to work on them.

Personal development has long been seen as a way to not just bring about better self-awareness but the ability to tap into individual potential. Toxic patterns of behavior are always limiting, both personally and professionally.

Danny Swersky explains that with personal development, individuals learn not only about what needs to be changed but it offers tried-and-true techniques to make the change a reality.

Understanding the Process

Personal development is a process; there’s no one perfect way to work on oneself. But there are many methods that have been shown to be effective ways to reach set goals and showcase the power of individual growth to provide long-term, transformative results.

Identify What’s Standing in the Way

Self-reflection is an essential first step.

Think about what actually needs to change. It could be a bad relationship, a mental health issue such as anxiety, fear, or self-loathing, or a job that is emotionally or physically draining. From here, think about what may help — reconnecting with family, having more free time, seeking counseling or working on advancing an education or career.

During this process, it will become easier to recognize bad habits as new behaviors begin, such as saving money or going back to school.

Practice Positive Visualization

A large barrier to personal improvement is a pattern of not just toxic behavior but toxic thinking. It’s hard to see obstacles when they are created by one’s own negative thoughts.

A fundamental aspect of working on oneself is avoiding negativity, whether that comes in the form of inner thoughts or reflections or is tied to goals that may exist but are seen as unreachable.

Positivity takes practice. It’s challenging at first but take close stock of thoughts and make a note when they are negative or destructive. It often helps to visualize goals more positively as well.

A goal is always more achievable if a person believes it is realistic and reminds themself of the steps to achieve it. In both of these techniques, meditation and other relaxation approaches may help with refocusing the mind.

It’s all generally part of the mental growth that’s needed to achieve any personal development goals.

Daniel Swersky

Take Small Steps

Individual growth takes time and having too many large goals over a short period of time will lead to failure. Instead, try identifying small steps to take that will make it easier to achieve an objective.

More modest, achievable aspirations have been shown to be a big motivator to move on to the next steps with confidence. No one becomes a better problem solver or more effective communicator overnight.

Leave the Comfort Zone

Many people are held back because there’s a reliance on what is familiar. But what’s familiar and seemingly comfortable could be exactly what is holding someone back.

To meet new personal goals, stepping out of a perceived comfort zone can go a long way in discovering what makes an individual happy and ultimately, a more fulfilled person.

Sometimes, a person needs to step outside of themselves, their routines, and their usual thoughts, to really get to the heart of what one needs and wants in life.

Managing a Nonprofit

The practice of nonprofit management is an increasingly complex and dynamic field, involving a wide range of tasks and responsibilities. In order to succeed, it is important to understand key strategies for maintaining the financial health of your organization, as well as navigating challenging issues related to stakeholder engagement.

Danny Swersky provides six tips below for nonprofit management and point to relevant resources that can help you take your organization to the next level.

Focus on Financial Management

A strong financial foundation is essential for any successful nonprofit organization. Strong fiscal management practices, including budgeting, cash flow forecasting and financial reporting are key; make sure to track not only income and expenses, but also fund and non-fund sources. When appropriate, leverage new technologies such as cloud-based accounting software to optimize your financial tracking processes.

Develop a Strategic Plan

Developing a comprehensive strategic plan is essential in order to maximize the impact of your organization’s resources and ensure sustainability over time. A good plan should include a vision and mission, objectives for the next 3-5 years, and strategies for achieving those goals. Starting with a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis can be helpful in beginning to craft your plan.

Optimize Fundraising Efforts

Fundraising is an important part of any nonprofit organization’s strategy. Whether you are looking to diversify your funding sources, build better relationships with existing donors, or develop new methods of fundraising in order to reach broader audiences, it is important to approach this work strategically. Make sure to scope out potential opportunities and create a plan for nurturing relationships with new and existing supporters over time.

Foster Good Governance Practices

Good governance practices are essential for any nonprofit organization, both to ensure compliance and to build trust among stakeholders. This means developing clear policies and procedures, documenting activities related to decision-making processes, and providing training for board members. It is also important to ensure you have adequate insurance coverage in order to protect your organization in the event of any legal issues.

Danny Swersky

Utilize Data and Technology

Gathering data on operations and fundraising activities, as well as regularly evaluating performance metrics (such as budget variances), can provide valuable insights into how to optimize your nonprofit’s efforts. Leveraging technology such as customer relationship management (CRM) systems or content management systems (CMS) can also make it easier to track data and create more efficient processes.

Invest in Leadership Development

Nonprofit organizations are successful when they have effective leadership at the helm. Investing in training and development for staff, board members, and volunteers is essential for success. This includes providing professional development opportunities as well as mentorship programs and support for succession planning.

Final Thoughts

By following these suggestions, nonprofit organizations can strengthen their operations and maximize the impact of their resources. With the right approach, they can also make a real difference in their communities and see their missions come to life thanks to their work and effort.

The Many Ways that Volunteering Impacts Employee Wellbeing

Daniel Swersky

When people look back on 2022, they’ll likely remember it as the year that employees took back their voices. With trends like “quiet quitting” and the “Great Resignation” affecting much of the corporate landscape, businesses have been forced to take seriously how employee well-being can impact their bottom lines. With that in mind, Daniel Swersky explains that some teams have begun implementing volunteer opportunities through their companies.

While it may sound like added work, research has shown that volunteering can directly increase happiness and mental well-being. By encouraging employees to work together for the better good, rather than for the company’s profits, employers can help their teams bond and experience a shared sense of responsibility.

Creating a Space for Personal Passions within the Workplace

A global study conducted by Mercer in 2018 found that employees most desired three things from their careers—flexibility, purpose, and a focus on their well-being. Most people wanted to feel that their personal lives were not being eclipsed by their work lives; that they could continue to explore their interests and hobbies despite their careers.

In a post-COVID world, hybrid work settings have become a norm, allowing greater flexibility than ever before. Yet, many employees still feel that their companies lack a strong focus on purpose and well-being. Offering volunteer opportunities bridges that divide by introducing a chance for employees to bring their passions into the office.

So many people have personal interests and projects that they struggle to integrate with their corporate lives. Yet, by allowing employees to make volunteering a part of their jobs, companies can create a safe space for workers to express their true selves. This undoubtedly creates a sense of greater purpose in life and breaks down the tired expectations of a dry, sanitized office space.

Daniel Swersky

Volunteering Improves Mental Health

Researchers have explored the positive impacts of volunteering for several years, with one such study from the United Kingdom exploring its benefits for mental health. The study explored household data over a 20-year period, finding that those who had volunteered for an extended period were significantly happier than those who didn’t.

The exact mechanism for why this could be so isn’t yet clear, but it’s believed that the combination of social integration, greater purpose, and a sense of helping others helps to reduce feelings of depression and hopelessness. When applied to a business landscape, the same effects could help employees feel happier with their careers and more appreciated in life.

Likewise, volunteers have been found to have more confidence than non-volunteers, which can directly translate into better performance in the office. By taking on the role of a supportive member of society, volunteers often develop a sense of pride in their work that they carry into all aspects of life.

The Bottom Line

2022 was the year that Americans remembered to work to live, not live to work. With a renewed focus on employee wellbeing, companies are now embracing volunteer opportunities as a means to improve happiness and satisfaction for their staff. This could have a direct impact on how businesses operate and improve the overall corporate landscape.

Volunteering and the Pursuit of Happiness

Danny Swersky

Years of corporate culture have transformed what was once a heartfelt way of giving back to local communities into little more than an accolade for future CVs. Yet, in light of ongoing global issues, volunteer groups have reestablished themselves as vital and necessary parts of society. Danny Swersky says that for those involved, it’s more than just a line on a resume—it provides a sense of purpose, community, and even happiness.

Research has even gone so far as to study the benefits of volunteering, not just for recipients but for the individuals who dedicate their time to the needs of others. The findings are clear volunteering is a crucial step toward the pursuit of happiness. To understand why this is so, Daniel discusses how volunteering contributes to positive mental health and creates a sense of unity.

Volunteering as an Ethical Act

It is of course required of a man that he should benefit his fellow-men — many if he can; if not, a few; if not a few, those who are nearest; if not these, himself.” – Seneca On Leisure 3.5

Philosophers have pondered for thousands of years what it means to be truly happy. While some have argued that joy is rooted in senseless abandon, others have maintained that mindfulness, strict moral codes, and personal exploration are necessary to finding contentment. For the Stoics, though, altruism was an ethical duty, and, without it, no man could find happiness.

This philosophy has been echoed throughout the years with psychologists, sociologists, and philanthropists all arguing for the benefits of social outreach. According to their works, by giving of themselves, volunteers experience a greater sense of place and purpose that fosters contentment in their lives.

It’s the ethical sense of doing what’s right to help a fellow human that generates warmth and care through society. And, according to researchers, this has a direct impact on mental health and happiness.

Danny Swersky

Connects People from Diverse Backgrounds

Behind the purely ethical benefits, researchers have also explored how social connection through volunteering helps to create a greater sense of inclusion. This is especially true for older volunteers who may feel isolated from their communities. By working with others to support those in need, volunteers are able to build new relationships that span different ages and backgrounds.

People from all walks of life can come together, share their experiences, and unite to offer greater support to the disenfranchised. This promotes a sense of understanding and a greater appreciation for the plight of others, as well as fostering a new outlook on otherwise divided communities. Taken all together, this can contribute to feelings of living a fuller life.

Final Thoughts

Volunteering should never be seen as a way to gain favor in the corporate world. Instead, it should be treated as a way to give back while only receiving the happiness and satisfaction of doing the right thing. By understanding how volunteering can contribute to mental health and contentment, we can all appreciate the importance of social outreach in our daily pursuits of happiness.