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Importance of giving back

What’s the first thing you want to do when you receive incredible news? You reach out to someone who’s important to you to share. What do you do when something terrible happens? Hopefully, you reach out to a loved one for support.

We rely on the people around us for emotional support, be it for good or bad times. As much as this need for connection is ingrained in us, it also goes the other way.

As human beings, we have the innate need to contribute to those around us. Whether it comes in the form of something small like being there for a friend in need or something massive like contributing financially to a worthwhile cause, we realize the importance of giving.

Why is giving back to the community important?

The importance of giving to others can’t be understated and that’s because the secret to living is giving. If you really think about it, what is life all about? Creating meaning. How do you create meaning in your life? It’s not about what you do for yourself: It’s about how you’re able to better the lives of the people around you – your loved ones, the people in your community or the lives of people somewhere else in the world.

Meaning never comes from what you get, it comes from what you give. So, how can you start realizing the importance of giving?

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Find your purpose

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What is it in life that drives you? Are you motivated by making lots of money at your job? Do you enjoy being recognized for your accomplishments? That’s a good start, but think deeper. Why do you enjoy making money? Is it so you can provide for your family and feel secure? Perhaps you relish being recognized for your achievements because it makes you feel like you’re making the most of your time or you enjoy giving back to your industry in some way. There’s always a greater purpose that drives your actions.

Now, what if you could work toward your purpose by contributing to others? This will help you reach a greater sense of fulfillment. You can feel like you’re making a major difference for a good cause and ultimately get closer to achieving your personal goals.

Start small and start today

Why aren’t you already giving back? Is it because you feel that you don’t have the time or money to do so? It’s not about a lack of resources, it’s about a lack of resourcefulness.

Many people wait to give back, but the truth is, no matter what resources you have, you can start today. And the truth is, even if you have very little, if you’re not giving back now, you won’t if you become wildly successful. Contribution is a mindset that enables us to devote part of our lives to helping others – it’s not about how much you have. Whether you make $30,000 a year and donate your time to volunteering at a local community center or you make $1 million annually and are able to donate a portion of each paycheck, there are ways you can start helping others today.

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Create a ripple effect

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Think of a few people you admire. Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey, J.K. Rowling, Marc Benioff and Serena Williams are a few names that come to mind. What do these people regularly do? They work diligently to spread their messaging and create value in the lives of others, and they give back. Now, think of the positive impact these people have had on the globe. Bill Gates, through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, has given more than $30 billion to charity.

Do you find these actions inspirational? Most people don’t have the means that Bill Gates does, but that doesn’t mean your contributions can’t inspire others, too. Once you start giving back to your community, you’ll see how your positive actions encourage others to get involved, too. Maybe your coworkers want to come along on your next beach clean up or your daughter is eager to volunteer at a local homeless shelter with you. The same is true of financial giving. If you find a nonprofit that piques your interest, maybe your friends and coworkers will be equally inspired to give as well. Create a ripple of positive impact through your behavior.

The importance of giving to others shouldn’t be overlooked. Not only will your actions benefit those on the receiving end of your good deeds, but you’ll find a personal sense of joy and fulfillment through your contributions. Once you develop the habit of giving back regularly, even if you’re making a small contribution, it will begin to feel more natural and easy to do so. Start contributing to the world around you today, and prepare to reap the benefits of giving back.

Ready to contribute?

Now that you understand the importance of contributing, learn more about ways you can give back to the community.