Sacrifice is one of the six core values embodied in the Medal of Honor, but it can be challenging to apply in your everyday life. As with the other values, starting small and then building momentum is the best plan for success.
There are various ways to practice this core value and help your community, but simply being involved is the first step. Consider taking on these tasks to help preserve the legacy of the Medal of Honor by practicing sacrifice each and every day.
Focus on We, Not Me
Adopting a “we, not me” mentality is necessary to successfully practice sacrifice in any situation. The “we” can be as small as two people or larger than a nation. In any case, this mindset goes against the base instinct of self-preservation and requires strength of will to maintain. Considering others before considering yourself is the golden rule of most cultures and the defining characteristic of this core value.
No Act Is Too Small
In everyday life, there is no shortage of opportunity to step up and support other members of your community. Whether it’s providing directions when you’re already late or giving your umbrella to someone else in a downpour, no act of sacrifice is considered too small. Even the simplest acts of generosity and selflessness may make a world of difference to a person in need.
Volunteer Your Time
Any chance to volunteer is a choice to sacrifice something of personal value for the benefit of others. In the simplest terms, you are giving up your time and energy to help those in need. Sacrifice implies a dedication to giving more than what is owed. You can live this core value time and again by volunteering often and using your resources to make a positive difference in your community.
Find a Cause You Believe In
While volunteering, you may find that there are many causes in need of aid. It is worthwhile to find a cause that is near and dear to your heart. Was there a time when someone else made a sacrifice for your benefit? Are you able to give something back in a similar way? With a cause that you believe in, you’ll find that making sacrifices for your community is easier than you think.
Help Fund a Cause
If sacrificing your time is not an option, consider sacrificing the fruits of your labor instead. As with your actions, no monetary sacrifice is too small to make a difference in your community. This can be as simple as packing your own lunch one day a week and donating the money you save.
The Congressional Medal of Honor Society works to help educators teach their students the concept of sacrifice through the Character Development Program. Together, teachers and Medal of Honor Recipients help students learn how to create a better world for themselves and those around them.
Join us in perpetuating the legacy of the Medal of Honor and honoring our nation’s heroes by making a direct impact on the work of the Society. The Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with the sole mission to support the work of the Society. You can also keep up with our upcoming events, special announcements, and partner/Recipient highlights by joining our monthly newsletter.