The wise man does not lay up his own treasures. The more he gives to others, the more he has for his own.
- Lao Tzu
With the economy foundering and the media conjuring up images of depression at every opportunity, the idea of generosity may seem a bit of a hard sell.
In reality, now, more than ever, is the time to dig deep and give what you have to help others in need. Take a look at the list below to see why giving generously is good for you - and the recipients of your largesse:
- Almost half the world population live on less than $2.50 a day
If we all do what we can to share our 'plenty' with those less fortunate, it will go a long way to alleviating poverty both globally and in our own communities.
- Being generous can boost your immune system
A study by Cornell University found that volunteering increases a persons energy, their sense of being in control of their life and their self esteem. Several studies have documented that these sorts of positive emotions strengthen the immune system.¹
- Generosity makes you less fearful
Generosity is a great form of greed control. It helps us to let go of the fear of not having enough, and end the 'cycle of clinging and hoarding'¹ that goes with it.
What is more, by prioritising generous giving we create an attitude of abundance which allows us to give even more.
- Generosity creates community
Generosity is not just about giving. It is about generating possibility, about creating hope, dignity and opportunity. While a lack of generosity leads to despair and alientation, an abundance of generosity builds community and connects people.²
- Lack of generosity is at the root of many of our 'personal, societal, national & global problems'²
Generous attitudes and generous actions can help solve even seemingly intractable issues like poverty and climate change. By being generous we become less afraid of what we might lose and more creative in finding positive solutions to our problems.
¹From The Giving Heart: Unlocking the Transformative Power of Generosity in Your Life by M J Ryan
²From the Readers Guide to Being Generous: The Art of Right Living by Lucinda Vardey & John Della Costa at BookClubs.ca
(Article originally published at Socyberty)