Thursday, May 22, 2014

One of the Best Things About Generosity

by Joshua Becker, Becoming Minimalist:


The more you give, the more you receive. When we give stuff away, we make the world a better place.

Generous people feel better about themselves. They report a greater sense of life satisfaction and happiness.

They build stronger relationships with others. Studies have even linked generosity to improved physical health.

Giving also benefits the receiver. We improve their lives. We fight to overturn injustice. We offer an example to the world of a better way to live. And spur others to do the same.

But maybe the greatest benefit of generosity is the realization that we already have enough.

Our society is held hostage by the pursuit of more. No matter how much we have, we always seem to need more - more stuff and more money.

We choose our careers for the sake of securing more. We spend the best hours of our day trying to obtain more. We get jealous when “less-deserving” people seem to have more. And we constantly worry about having enough.

But this constant desire for more is having damaging effects on our society. 71% of us report feeling stress about money. There are some who experience this anxiety because of legitimate financial need, but for most of us, this stress is misplaced.

In a world where 6 billion people live on less than $13,000/year, most of our financial-related stress occurs because of artificially-manufactured need.

Generosity changes these thoughts and helps to remove this pursuit. It reveals to us how blessed we already are. It reminds us we already own more than we need. It shows us how much we have to give and how much good we can accomplish.

It helps us see the needs of those we live alongside. And it offers a better alternative for our money than spending it on ourselves.

Generosity counters materialism and consumerism in our lives. It reminds us that we already have enough. It wars against greed and selfish pursuits. It aligns our life with higher purposes. And offers a better way to live.

Give more things away. Your life will feel lighter. Your heart will feel warmer. And the world will be better (tweet that).

Make a financial donation to a charity you support. Donate clothing you don’t wear, sporting equipment you don’t use, books you have read, or furniture taking up space.

Be generous with your time by volunteering at your local school, homeless shelter, or nonprofit of your choice.

Just give something away this week. And be reminded that you already have more than you need. 

About Joshua Becker

Writer. Inspiring others to live more by owning less. Bestselling author of Simplify & Clutterfree with Kids.

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