choosing generosity

Generosity is a characteristic I’ve always been drawn to and marveled at in others.

Screen shot 2013-02-14 at 9.49.03 PM

I don’t consider myself selfish, but I also don’t think I’m instinctively generous. Meaning: it’s not something that comes naturally to me without hesitation, but it’s a trait I want to explore and embrace. Any time I witness someone being truly generous, particularly in a spontaneous way, it  takes my breath away. That people can be that good.

So. My New Year’s resolution this year was…

…to give money to every person, cause and collection that asked. This includes strangers panhandling, friends fundraising for different efforts and donation jars in check-out lines (among other things). I decided that even if I can only give a dollar at a time, I’m going to say ‘yes’ to all of these offers, at least for the year.

It’s been so fulfilling.

I no longer divert my eyes when I’m stopped at an intersection and see people asking for money. I look forward to helping someone; reaffirming that people are intrinsically good. That no matter what, someone cares.

And it feels so good to give money to friends running races and collecting money for different organizations they feel passionately about. To have another person validate your commitments is inspiring.

I’m not spending a ton of money doing this. It’s $1 to $20 at a time, which is (sadly – but honestly) the amount I spend on trivial things everyday.

There’s no way to determine if any of the people I’m supporting truly need the money. But who’s to say? My determination is, if they have made the decision to ask me for it, then they need it. More than I do.

I love the idea that even on a very, very small scale, I’m bringing some happiness to different people this way. Being the change. Sharing positivity, even if it’s fleeting.