Getting Over the Intimidation of Giving

from on 11 Oct 2009

The thought of giving for the first time or giving in a new way might make you nervous. That’s okay. Just remember the main reason why we give, and you’ll have the right mindset as you step out of your comfort zone.

Whether you give with your money or your time, the act of giving can mean more than you realize. But you’re not trying to look good or win an award, so don’t be intimidated. Just keep in mind—you are giving in order to help someone. No matter how big or small the gift, someone’s world will be a little better because you gave.

If you want to begin giving like no one else, start slowly. You don’t have to give to the whole world in one day! You may be in a hospital waiting room full of people anxiously waiting to hear about loved ones. There’s an opportunity right there to strike up a conversation and offer to buy someone a cup of coffee or a much-needed snack. You may spot someone with a flat tire on the side of the road and stop to help them change it. Giving time can make as much difference in those moments as any other gift.

If you prefer to give monetary gifts, leave an extra dollar or two in a Salvation Army bucket, or bless your restaurant server with a few extra dollars in addition to the regular tip. Before you know it, you’ll be ready to hand someone a $100 bill just because you want to! Yes, handing cash to someone you don’t really know can be, well … awkward. But while it may be uncomfortable for you, it can be a huge blessing to the receiver.

By now, most of us have heard the story of Larry Stewart, the Secret Santa who gave away millions of dollars over 26 years. He was never afraid to hand someone a $100 bill when he recognized a fellow man or woman in need. How did he do it?

Secret Santa didn’t allow his pride to get in the way of lending a helping hand. Really, it’s that simple. Face-to-face giving is never comfortable—in part because we are acknowledging a troubled or weak moment in someone else’s life. But it can also be a moment of great compassion and empathy.

It takes courage and kindness to step out of your comfort zone to help someone else, especially a stranger. But giving opens a door to happiness that you can’t find anywhere else. The happiest people in life are the ones who serve and give. They make a difference in this world.

Try your hand at giving like no one else today. You may inspire someone more than you will ever know.

How have you gotten over the intimidation of giving? Leave a comment below!

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