We all have people in our lives that have made a lasting impression. For some of us, it’s a teacher who stayed late to make sure we conquered our next exam. For others, it was our parents who invested time and made special memories with us. Still others look back with fondness to a mentor, coach, or friend who encouraged us to reach for our goals.
What do all of these people have in common? More often than not, those who are most influential and remembered can be defined by one term: generous. And not just generous with materialistic things, but being completely giving with their time, talents, knowledge, and skills. They’re the people who give freely of themselves so that you succeed in life.
Being extravagant with giving is key to being influential in another person’s life. Here are four reasons to go above and beyond and be extravagantly giving with others.
Make an impression. Like previously mentioned, people who are giving and generous are often those who have made some of the biggest impressions on our lives. For instance, parenting requires excessive amounts of generosity and a lot of people consider their mother or father their life’s biggest influencer.
Generosity is often the key to being influential in another person’s life. After all, the most enriching and rewarding of relationships are typically those that require the most give and take. You can make a lasting impression with others simply by giving.
What goes around comes around. The buck shouldn’t stop with you. Oftentimes, the place where you are in life is partly due to the generosity of others. Don’t be the hold up. Impart the knowledge and skills that have not only been given to you but you’ve also added to.
Generosity is cyclic, for when we give to those who are in need, they are more likely and more able to do the same in turn. Entry-level coworkers can benefit from mentorship and in turn and time give back by teaching others. Generosity with families in need in your community could potentially free them up to be more gracious with others in their own sphere. Don’t be a stopped up drain; let the generosity flow through you.
Enrich another person’s life. It’s so easy to get hung up on ourselves—chasing careers and corporate ladders and money and possessions. But it doesn’t have to, and shouldn’t, be this way. We as humans do far better sharing our experiences and lives with others.
Being extravagantly generous is an opportunity to make someone else’s day or life better. You can (and should) get started right away in your own community. Know of someone in need? Talk to them. Find out how to make their day better. You never know how far a smile, holding a door, or helping with grocery bags goes in another person’s life. More often than not, rightly timed generosity is something people carry with them for the rest of their lives.
Think outside yourself. Being generous isn’t just good for other people; it’s good for you yourself. It helps get you out of a rut and provides some perspective to your life. If you have a case of the doldrums, are contemplating the deeper shade of grass on the other side of the fence, or find yourself wallowing in self-pity or despair, there is no better cure than helping another person.
By being generous with others, you give your mind a break from constantly thinking of yourself. It boosts morale, helps you see the bigger picture of the human condition, and provides experiences you might otherwise not have.
Really, there is no excuse for not being generous. After all, there’s ample opportunity. So if you’re still not convinced, keep these four reasons in mind. They may just encourage you to step