Thursday, 7 October 2010

The Give Series 2: Change Your Thinking

Welcome to Week 2 of the Give Series. Last week we looked at a dictionary definition of ‘give’ compared this to our actual understanding. This week we’ll reflect on our thoughts about giving since the last post.

When I reflected on the words I shared last week about giving, I realised just how much Irish-Catholic Guilt I carry. My ancestors have a lot to answer for! I've been thinking about some ways to overcome this, and there’s one thing that has worked so far: I value generosity. I value generosity. I value generosity. I value generosity. Whenever I've thought about giving in the last week (which has been far more than usual… thanks blog!) I've replaced Guilt by focusing on this mantra. I value generosity.

Generosity was one of the values I identified when setting some personal goals earlier this year. For me, living ethically includes living generously. I started the Give Series because I recognised a conflict between my value for generosity and my Guilt in giving. I wanted to change my thinking so that I could practice generosity free from Guilt of not giving (or being?) enough. I wanted my values to align with my actions and live more ethically.

Thanks to this mantra, in the last week I've felt free to give and also free not to give. The interesting thing I’m learning about this is how Guilt has has played into other areas of my life. At the end of a long day at work when I haven’t quite finished that report, I've said to myself “I value generosity and have been generous today. I have done enough.” I've gone home without worrying about work, where previously I've been well-known for dwelling.

Freedom! Wooo hooo!

At risk of boring you into a vow of blog-reading-celibacy, I’ll leave this week’s Give Series entry here. Next week we’ll bust some of the giving myths that have been touched on so far. The following week we’ll have an opportunity to talk about some of the lessons we've been learning about giving.

How’s your giving-thinking going?

I value generosity.

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