The holidays are typically a time of giving, but I have realized that being generous in my everyday life, and not just during the holidays, really does bring me so much joy. I think a lot of time, we think of being generous as only being tied to our finances, but that couldn’t be further from the truth, so I’ve split up the categories in my own life that I have found I can be generous in, no matter the season.
Sometimes, this is more valuable than our money, if we’re totally honest. How hard is it to take an extra day, let alone a few hours, to do something for someone else? Some ways, I have found being generous with my time has enriched my everyday life is through literally just making time for a friend who needs to hang out, volunteering at a local nonprofit or food bank or even just accepting an invite to something that you’d rather not go to, but you know how much it would mean to that person if you came.
I think our money really does show what we care about, and sometimes it’s needed to be reminded that it’s not all about us. Some fun ideas that you can be generous with your money is to pay for a random person’s table at a restaurant (or behind you in the fast food line if you’re me, oops!), buying a Starbucks gift card and posting it to your social accounts for anyone to use, or just taking a friend to lunch. Doing things just because can really brighten people’s day and be such a good exercise for your own giving habits.
This is another one that’s almost as hard to give as our money. As an introvert, I am always tempted to say ‘no’ and just stay home, or keep to myself because it’s easier, but sometimes giving your energy can be such a gift to those around you. Babysit for a friend who needs the night off, help someone paint a room in their house, or even worse – help someone move! Giving of yourself and your energy can be the kindest gesture to the people in your life who really need it.
Your gifts and talents
Everyone has a different skill set. Maybe you can design your friend a logo, help them with their budget, declutter their closet or take them shopping. Think through what you’re good at, and then think about how the people or places in your community could use what you have to offer.
I know the last thing we want to do, especially in this season, is give more of what we feel like we don’t have, but sometimes the things we have to give really do end up giving us life in return. Although being generous is so needed, it’s also important to set boundaries, know your limits and practice a little self-care along the way. Check out How To Stay On Budget This Holiday Season Without Feeling FOMO and 7 Beauty Brands That Give Back This Season for other holiday giving inspiration.