Being selfless by helping others in the community, especially when it puts a smile on one’s face, is one of the best feelings I have had over the past four years of my high school career.Volunteering within my community throughout high school has not only taught me to be selfless and that thinking about and putting others first before yourself as well as kindly helping others out can make a difference, however volunteering within my community has really made me grow into a person I thought I would never become and made me realize who I really am and my own nature.Throughout high school, I have had so many opportunities to volunteer within my community: making food and cleaning a homeless shelter with my church, to helping elementary school kids, from a nearby elementary school named Yukon Elementary, with their homework, and recently, voluntarily giving up my Halloween to volunteer at a carnival so that kids could have fun for one night playing games and getting candy.A specific event that I volunteered at that had sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of myself was the time I volunteered at the Halloween Carnival for kids at the park I live next to, named Wilson Park. It was like any other Halloween i’ve had previous years, however this time, instead of going trick or treating with my friends or going to a Halloween party, or even staying home doing nothing, I signed up to volunteer my entire night to run a booth by myself at the carnival.Running the booth for three hours was very stressful and tiring, however, running the booth and playing games with the kids really put a smile not only on their face, but as well as the faces of their parents. I remember one parent coming up to me thanking me and really appreciating what I was doing because it made their child’s Halloween. Before this event and encounter, I never really understood why people volunteered and why people were selfless and put others first. However, after this event, I realized that it’s because it makes people feel good as well as makes others happy.Because of volunteering, I have really noticed and have realized that I have become a more thoughtful and selfless person. Thinking about and putting others first before yourself, as well as doing things for the community doesn’t hurt. Volunteering within my community has also taught me that small things and changes can have a big impact. Little things such as cooking for the homeless and volunteering at community fairs have far-reaching implications.My outlook on life has also changed from being a pessimist, to an optimist. In the past, I have always tended to see the worst aspect of things and believed the worst would happen due to traumatizing personal events in my life, however volunteering within my community, working with people of different ages and really just helping out and making a difference in people’s lives and making people happy has made me more hopeful and confident about the future. Nonetheless, I have become more happier knowing the change and the happiness I have brought with volunteering.Volunteering has also given me a new understanding of myself and has made me more aware of my self knowledge. It has made me realize who I really am and my own nature. Before volunteering within my community, I thought I was a pessimist, but in reality, that wasn’t the person I really am. I know that I am a kind, helpful, and an optimistic person, volunteering just gave me that new understanding of myself. And lastly, volunteering has made me appreciate life more and helping those in need really reminded me of the things that really matter- family, friends, and health. Essentially, volunteering has made me see my own life in a new and different light.