How to Be Generous

Friday, January 30, 2009

Being generous begins with treating each person as though they have already achieved the potential for greatness that is in every one of us. It is in essence a sincere desire to make others' lives easier or more pleasant.

Remind yourself every day of the generosity you want to not only feel, but show.
When interacting with others, notice the things you could do to make their lives easier or happier. Even if you do not take action, awareness of your power to improve the world around you is key.
Think of specific ways you can be good to the people you know. I.e. if a friend or family member's name appears, list something nice you can do for that person. If it's a co-worker or teacher, think of how you might make his or her job easier--perhaps by helping someone finish a job or working hard, so the teacher can continue with new material.
Extend this thoughtfulness to strangers, even if all you do is smile and say hello, or let them on to the highway in front of you.
Think about how your action impacted them, i.e., they smiled and had a pleasant moment; they were able to get to their destination on time.
As you're consciously generous to others, it will get easier and easier. Soon the time will come when you're automatically generous. The natural progression is that others will be more generous to you. After all, it's true that "what goes around, comes around."
Remember that generosity is not just a decision, its a lifestyle.

* Generosity can also be forgiving a person's shortcomings or mistakes.
* Don't push yourself on being generous; just try to summon it as instinct tells you to.

Try to avoid being generous on cash, as it can cause some issues between you and others. If someone you know really well asks for it, consider the following: Are they going to pay it back? What will the money be used for? If you like the answers, then go on, but remember, don't give out your entire bank account, and try to find something in the deal for you - a return on your investment if you like.


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