Generosity: The greatest gift

By Scott Westerman 
 It is one of the most beautiful compensations of this life that you cannot sincerely try to help another without helping yourself. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

A great misconception is that money is the ultimate success metric. The dedicated contribution of inspired, caring individuals is the true coin of the realm. If we are generous in helping others, the law of cause and effect will reflect good will in our direction.

And the greatest gift you can give another person is your time.

In the early weeks of our Jacksonville reinvention, I’ve been reaching out to people who are engaged in work I admire. My goal it to find out how I can contribute to their success. In every instance, I’ve found a nugget of value to share. That small act, alone, has been enlightening, energizing and rewarding.

We empower fellow travelers by understanding their burdens and doing what we can to make them lighter. Where the prime directive is alleviating suffering, “Where does it hurt and how can I help?” become the most important questions.

There is almost always something you can do, an idea, a little elbow grease, a resource you can share; sometimes it’s as simple as a listening ear or an encouraging word. The gift of generosity may occur at a life-changing crossroad, so practice it widely and often.

The secret is giving without the expectation of return. The paradox is that when you do, gifts inevitably come back to you in abundance.

Suze Orman writes, “True generosity is an offering; given freely and out of pure love. No strings attached. No expectations. Time and love are the most valuable possession you can share.”

And Maya Angelou teaches us that “Giving liberates the soul of the giver.”

Be generous with your time and talent and the return on these investments will be exponential.