Regardless of the time of year, one of my favorite stories is A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. The protagonist Ebenezer Scrooge was a wealthy man if you counted his dollars, but his stingy approach to money infiltrated his whole life — leaving him filled with loneliness and despair. In contrast, Bob Cratchett had a meager salary, but his home was filled with love and laughter. Thankfully, by the end of the tale even Scrooge found the joy in generosity.
What was the difference between Ebenezer Scrooge and Bob Cratchett, besides their balance in the bank?
I dare say it is Gratitude. Appreciation. Joy. The scarcity versus abundance mentality. Coming from a place of fear versus from a place of love.
Being generous is an act and an attitude… and that attitude comes from a mindset of abundance.
How can you build your generosity muscle this week? First, build on the gratitude practice we discussed last week. Let that gratitude grow into joy. Then, see how many ways you can share that joy with others! Donating money or volunteering time to a cause dear to your heart is great.
What more can you do, though? Share deserved credit at work? Forgive someone a small transgression, recognizing that we all have faults? Write a note to someone who matters to you — even an old mentor or teacher? Spend an extra 15 minutes being present with your children, your spouse, your close friend — and really listening to them? Perform a random act of kindness? There are infinite ways to show generosity.
Tilt 365 Challenge: This week, I will look for unusual ways to be generous by having an abundant mindset.
Avoiding being Indulgent (overuse). When overused, generosity can slip into indulgence — where the receiver gets “spoiled.” This typically happens when someone is generous to try to please others, or to gain favor. Then the generous act is no longer a selfless act, but rather a gift with invisible strings attached. Simply check your motives as you embark on being generous. A fun way to do this is to be anonymous every once in awhile, too!
Commendable Trait: Generous
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