Giving our resources has the power to change our lives and the lives of those who receive our gifts for a long time after the gift has been shared.
It saddens me when I read about how wealthier nations hoard vaccines, knowledge, and technology desperately needed in poorer countries. Likewise, it irks me when I read about countries that give-with strings attached. But what about us? How does giving affect us on an individual level?
We’ve heard the adage, “It’s better to give than receive.” Studies prove that to be true. Giving money makes people feel happier. I wonder if that’s part of the reason people give. So they feel better.
While living in a small seaside town in Greece, it was not uncommon to see children coming up to tourists begging for money. My friend advised against giving them any money as it perpetuates the behavior. Does giving money stunt the receiver in any way?
I recall giving money to one of these children, whose dad was high on drugs, wondering how much money the kids had. It’s the same question we ask when we donate to organizations — what percentage goes to the people they are meant to serve?
The World Needs It, Without Judgement
According to the world bank, 9.2% of the world’s population lives in extreme poverty — less than $1.90 per day. Eight hundred eighty-four million people don’t have access to essential drinking water. And this poverty exists even in wealthy nations.
It’s not a lack of resources that causes poverty but inequity — we’re not sharing the wealth effect. There are many reasons for this. One is that we believe people should work for what they get.
Yet, we can all name countless individuals with a silver spoon in their mouths who have rarely worked a day. So don’t judge people who need your gift!
We are all well aware that the world is not a level playing field. In a global crisis like the pandemic, the wealth of the ten richest men doubled while the developing world struggled to meet their basic needs.
Why We Should Give
One of the more profound benefits of giving is that it reduces our fear of lack and increases our appreciation for our abundance. We are blessed with so much! It takes faith to give, believing that more will come through our giving. It’s the fundamental law of flow!
With constant negative news in the media, many people fear economic collapse, paying their bills, caring for their children, etc. By giving, amid all this negativity, we are tapping into our resources, believing there will be more. And there will be.
The Ripple Effect
The world is much smaller than we’d like to believe. And one person’s action has a ripple effect on another person’s life. Giving does the same thing. When we give, we can change lives. Changing a life impacts the lives of all those around that changed life.
Going Beyond Money
The pandemic exacerbated our sense of isolation from our communities. Moreover, with social media, people lack depth in their connection with society and their community.
The gift of your time is one of the most precious gifts you can give.
One of the greatest blessings of giving your time and resources is that it helps you stretch and achieve your potential. Mahatma Gandhi said, “To find yourself, lose yourself in the service of others.”
Giving Takes The Focus Off You
If you’re feeling depressed or trapped about your problems, look outside yourself to the people around you. Maybe they have had an injury and would appreciate a cooked meal. Giving takes the focus off ourselves and our problems.
It’s in Your Nature to Give
It’s in your nature to give. Witness children’s behavior: sure, some are possessive, but most kids share readily. They want to engage, connect and share; it comes naturally to take care of their dolls, feed the ducks, and talk to strangers.
However, somewhere along the way, we believe that we must keep what we’ve gotten for ourselves. If you give in to a scarcity mindset, you will limit your success.
Bringing It All Together
Who will you give today? How will you serve? Share your time, money, or both. Don’t give from a place of massive analysis. Just give. Give something and witness the impact it has on your life. And see how it benefits your life. Giving empowers the giver as much as the receiver. Start giving today!