This is the 3rd post in a series about decisions for my business in 2013. You can read Decision #1 here and Decision #2 here.
Of all the book titles I’ve considered for the book I dream of writing some day, my top two favorites are: Give Everything and Use Everything.
What I’d like most to do in my life, what I would be most proud of and satisfied with doing, is being able to live a life of generosity and usefulness to others.
At times, this desire to give is in direct conflict with being a business owner. Giving everything is not a business model that is sustainable. If I want to grow a business, I must have a profitable pricing model. And, making money is one means to generosity — if I am financially successful, I can give more away to others.
When I say that giving everything is a decision for 2013, I do not mean that I will literally give away everything I have. Instead, I want to have an attitude of generosity; I want to give what I can; I want to give more than is expected; I want to give energy, encouragement, help, support, love, kindness, time, money, and expertise. I want to give as often as I can, to as many people as I can.
Part of my desire comes from being a recipient of generosity from others. I am regularly astounded by the way others give to me, the way God gives to me.
Here are a couple of examples of people giving to me recently. These totally amaze me.
Over Christmas, while I was away from home on a trip with my girls, a friend gave her entire afternoon to spend time with me while I waited in a pharmacy clinic so my daughter could be treated for what turned out to be strep throat. Not only that, she gave her energy to entertaining her children — and mine — while we waited.
Last week, a client invited, hosted, and treated an entire table full of potential clients to a wonderful dinner and put me on center stage to talk about my business.
The only response I can think of to giving is giving. I want to give because I have been given — so much.
Tell me something! Have you been amazed by generosity lately? Share your story. What do you enjoy giving?
I am the founder/CEO of the Weaving Influence team, the author of Reach: Creating the Biggest Possible Audience for Your Message, Book, or Cause, and the host of the Book Marketing Action Podcast. I’m a wife and mom of three kids, and I enjoy running, reading, writing, coffee, and dark chocolate.
I loved this post, Becky! I sure miss working with you but am so glad that everything is going so well- you deserve it 🙂
Thanks, Margy. I hope we can talk soon!
Hi Becky: I understand and agree with everything you wrote, but I wanted to suggest that there is a second response to receiving gifts – humble appreciation. I know I had a point in my life where, especially when people would give me praise or appreciation I would deflect it. One day I was with my mentor when I started to do that and he stopped me when he said “sometimes you just have to say thank you.” Since then I have been very sensitive to how my simple appreciation is often what makes the giver feel rewarded for their act. I guess some day we’ll have to figure out how to balance reciprocity with appreciation.
Thank you for the perspective. I would love to become a more gracious receiver of the blessings and gifts that life is bringing me. As one of those has been you and your encouragement, please accept this thank you, from my heart.
Becky, I think you hit the nail on the head here. My experience has been then when I’m having a tough day, I shift my focus and activities to giving to others. The impact on my mental state and on others is remarkable. Thanks for another great post.