“One man gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but ends up impoverished.” Hebrew proverb
“Giving brings happiness at every stage of its expression.” Buddha
“They who give have all things, they who withhold have nothing.” Hindu proverb
“Whoever tries to keep his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it.”Jesus of Nazareth
I went to a conference this weekend and was moved by motivator speaker describing the paradox that the more you give the more you receive. A mantra that I'm not only familiar with, I've tried to live my life with that in mind. The activity required us to ask 'what could we do for our clients?' 'What could we do for or HQ?' Of course because it was a how to make sales seminar, he went on to explain how a £15 gift of a book, went on to generate a lot in sales.
I started this blog just over a year ago because I had realised I had continually put my own dreams on hold to help other people.
It is strange, I'm one of lives volunteers. The first to put my hand up. So why do somethings I've put time and effort into resulted in rewarding, life enriching experiences? And other have left me feeling tired, unmotivated and a little used?
I think it goes back to the relationship level. If we put a volunteer on one side of the scale and another generous person on the other side it will happily go up and down as both sides give a receive. It doesn't work that well with a 'yeah thanks for that' person. Those that happily accept with out putting energy back into the ether. It seems to be the number one complaint in broken relationships - I gave they took. Oh sure there are a couple who can keep on giving not matter what - but they mostly have a saint in front of their names.
Some of the happiest people I know are kind and generous with their help and time. But they are also careful over where the put their energy. I don't think this year as been wasted, life is definitely a balance - I can see that now. But I'm still not practiced in how much I should be putting on the scales.
I would have liked to have added to the sales seminar something I have found expressed amazingly well in the following quote;
'Generosity cannot be faked in order to achieve some other more valued self-serving end. Generosity itself needs to be desired. The good of other people must be what we want. Generosity cannot be counterfeited. And fake generosity does not make us happier, healthier, and more purposeful in life. To live generously, one must in due time really become a generous person. Generosity must be authentic. It must actually be believed and practiced as a real part of one’s life.'
I like to give. But I was still really pleased by the gifts I received from the sales seminar.