Truthfully, this is one of my very favorite questions to be asked, not because I feel I need a lot of help, but because it shows me that the person who is asking is not a “me” person but rather someone who is thoughtful, giving, and is capable of putting others’ needs above their own. I also feel good when I ask someone else this very question because knowing I made someone else’s day a little brighter or easier always feels good. I am the type of person who does things for other people not because I expect anything in return, but because it just makes me feel good, especially when I have done something that I know many people will benefit from or is very much appreciated. And I always find it easier to give to people who give back, even though that’s not why I do it. People who give beck seem to be able to express their appreciation better as well, so maybe that has something to do with it.
It strikes me as odd sometimes that we make such a big deal over new stories where someone does something “out of the ordinary” for someone else. I’m glad those stories make the news so that my kids see those examples and so we don’t all lose sight of the importance of giving, but I wish those things were not so “out of the ordinary.”
I think we’ve become way too competitive as a society, and I find myself telling my kids that they need to be less competitive and more cooperative. In fact, we as a society could be more cooperative and less competitive. In other words, we need to be “we” people and not “me” people. In my opinion, too many people are too focused on what they can gain from any given situation instead of thinking about what they can give. If only more people would realize that the more you give, the more you get in return. Not only will people be willing to give to you, but you will gain that really good feeling that you made a difference, even if it was just a small difference in one person’s life.
Giving doesn’t have to be something huge. It can be one little thing here and there, or maybe a lot of little things. It’s all a matter of perspective. If you see doing something for someone else as being an inconvenience to you rather than a chance to put a smile on someone’s face or help him or her out, then you will be less likely to ask, “What can I do to help?”
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