I’ve recently started a dance/exercise class with the elderly residents of a nursing home. I feel good about it because I’m helping others. (It feels pretty good too, to be younger than everybody else!)
I also feel good about the work that I do, helping others achieve their goals in my coaching practice. I love seeing breakthroughs that I’ve had some part in.
What about you? Can you think of a time when you did a favour for someone just because you could? It feels awesome to give when it’s unexpected and without expectation for anything in return. There are things we all do that feel good in the doing.
Science is proving what Bible wisdom has known all along, that ‘It is more blessed to give than receive’, (Acts 20:35). Altruism, as psychology calls this, generous giving without expectation correlates with better health outcomes, improved well-being, fewer mental disorders and greater life satisfactions. In other words, you really do get when you give!
The key in this transaction is to give, not to get, but just to give. Then when do give, we will indeed get. Maybe you need to read that again. This is a heart issue. Giving willingly and cheerfully just because we can.
A couple of things we can give which might be a little challenging:
1. Forgiveness. We have all struggled with this one. Others do things that hurt us and are hard to forget. Without forgiveness though, we carry a heavy load. Jesus was clear from the cross, when He said: ‘Father, forgive them, they don’t know what they’re doing’ (Luke 23:32) That might help, it certainly does for me.
2. Encouragement. Everyone needs a friend to encourage us, be there at difficult times and believe in us. A kind word, a card, a cuppa and a chat, all offer encouragement to a friend in need.
3. Hope. Giving a sandwich and having time for a homeless person, donating to a worthy cause that helps others, listening to someone who feels depressed and hopeless. These things give hope to others who have forgotten the joy of living.
Giving starts with each of us. We might only be one person in a big world, but a little joy goes a long way. This is extending influence from your world to the world at large.
Today, tomorrow, next week and next month. Remember to give of yourself and see all the benefits that will come your way because you ‘get when you give!’
Love Peta XO
To give to the A Woman of Influence fundraiser for A21 and fire relief in our own backyard:
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