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Ways To Be Generous (Without Spending A Penny)

by | Jan 18, 2022 | Philanthropy

For many people, generosity is a way to express their appreciation and affection to others. It is surely fulfilling to see the people we care about happy because of the tokens and gifts we give. To an extent, some people even measure the depth of their love by the material things they give. But there are more ways to be generous than with money. 

Being a blessing to others is one of life’s greatest joys, and it can be shown through our time, attention, words, wisdom, and how we give grace.  

Ways to be generous with your time. 

Time is said to be the most valuable resource in the world, so this makes it one of the best gifts you can give. Being available for others during their time of need is a priceless act that can make a tremendous difference.  

Not only is volunteering with charities a generous use of time, remember that your loved ones want (and need) your time as well.  

Here’s a quick list of ways to be generous with your time: 

  • Volunteer at your church or for a local nonprofit. 
  • Spend uninterrupted time with family. 
  • Help a neighbor in need. 

Ways to be generous with your attention.

A carton of eggs, a small mound of flour, a rolling pin, and a flour sifter all lay on a wooden surface. The word “family” is stenciled in the middle using the flour.

Your physical presence matters, but your attention and intention matter more. If you’re spending time with loved ones but distracted with work, your phone, or a wandering mind, your quality time isn’t … well, quality.  

Your friends and family will appreciate your undivided attention. Being attentive also lets you focus on the moment, allowing you to enjoy it more!  

Here are ways to be generous with your attention: 

  • Sit at the dinner table as a family. 
  • Schedule time to visit with friends and extended family. 
  • Have a regular family game night or movie night. 
  • Practice being an active listener. Check out these ways to “Improve Your Active Listening Skills in Five Steps.” 

Ways to be generous with your words. 

A genuine compliment can go a long way; it can be a source of cheer, hope, and inspiration to the receiver. So, while others are quick to see the flaws or mistakes of others, try, instead, to focus on kind words and encouragement. 

Your decision to show admiration for a job well done can motivate someone to keep on improving. If you notice something noteworthy about a person, do not hesitate to acknowledge it with praise. You may just totally change someone’s life for the better. 

Simple ways to be generous with your words: 

  • Send an encouraging text to a family member or friend. 
  • Give a stranger a sincere compliment. 
  • Tell your spouse or kids something you love about them. 
  • Mail a handwritten note or card to someone! 

Ways to be generous with your wisdom. 

An older man and a young boy sit fishing at the edge of the water.

Whenever you feel like you have nothing to give, remember that everybody has a valuable skill or unique experience to share. By simply choosing to share the things you have seen and done, you can pass along invaluable wisdom that others can learn from.  

Your knowledge can empower others, so don’t shy away from imparting the lessons you have learned. You may be surprised by how much of a difference sharing your story can make. 

  • Teach your kids how to bake, sew, fish, fix cars, etc. Share your hobbies with them! 
  • Join a book club and connect with others who love to read and have deep, meaningful conversations. 
  • Share life or business lessons you’ve learned with those around you. 

Ways to be generous with grace. 

Life is unpredictable and no one is perfect. This means that patience is key, especially if you want to show grace to those around you. Since we’re all flawed, practice showing grace. This may mean controlling the urge to be annoyed at the inconveniences those around you may cause while also recognizing the limits of your patience  

In the long run, staying calm, even in stressful situations, can bring benefits to your overall health and well-being. 

Impactful ways to be generous with your grace: 

  • Write a card to someone you’ve noticed is having a bad day. 
  • Take time to journal and meditate. This way patience is about you, not them. 
  • Give someone a hug to show you care, no matter what. 
  • Revisit “time” and “attention” from above, because those are always a good solution. ❤️ 

Generosity is not measured by how much money you have or how many material things you can provide. If you find it a little hard to believe, just remember that the best things in life are free. 

So much of being generous is being intentional. We think you’ll love our blog post on “Creating Intentional Relationships.” Check it out!