Other Ways to Give This Giving Season
The season of giving is full of things to give and people to give them to. But too often we are focused on the tangible or physical things we give to others. Consequently I wanted to present you with a few ideas of ways to give that are non-monetary as well as easy ways that you can build these into your life that will help you give all year round.
The biggest thing you have available to give is your time. This can be spent volunteering but there are also easy ways that you can build this idea into your everyday life. My favorite way to easily add this is at the grocery store, I am usually shopping with my 2 young daughters and often elderly people approach us and either speak to my children or to me about my children. I could easily brush them off and move my cart on down the aisle with a “have a nice day” but I choose instead to give them a bit of my time. It’s usually under 5 minutes, they ask questions to me or my girls and we chat with them. I find they usually have children who are grown and gone, children who have passed away, or grandchildren that live far away that they don’t see as often as they would like. They seem to take so much joy from our conversations and it literally takes nothing away from my life, it actually has the opposite effect and gives me good feelings.
Give compassion. If you have lost a loved one you know how hard the 1st Christmas can be. So if you know anyone who has lost a loved one this year let them know that you are thinking about them during this difficult time and you understand. This small act of kindness can mean the world to someone who is suffering and struggling surrounded by happy people celebrating the holidays.
You can give your energy. A simple way to do this is give people your undivided attention. When you are speaking to others put your phone down, look them in the eye, be genuinely interested in what they have to say, and be completely engaged in the conversation.
Give your talents to others. No matter what your talents are (and I am completely sure that you have them) there is someone that needs them. Maybe you have handiwork skills, or cooking skills, or even grocery shopping skills, there is someone that could use your help this giving season.
Give your passion. When talking to others equal their excitement for the things they are telling you. If they are passionate about something and they are telling you about it, even if you don’t specifically care about the topic, equal their enthusiasm with your interest in what they are telling you.
The last thing to consider giving this holiday season is forgiveness. Forgiveness for others and maybe more importantly forgiveness for yourself. Don’t take your negative feelings into the new year. Let go of the things you have no control over and choose to believe that everyone is just living life doing the best that they can. Freeing your heart from resentment, pain, disappointment, and sadness as well as no longer giving someone or something else authority over your happiness is monumental. Give this gift to yourself and I know you won’t regret it.