The Power of Giving
The Gift of Giving provides benefits to both the receiver and the giver.
“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” – Winston Churchill
Oh, how true that is. Giving is one of the most incredible acts anyone can perform. While it’s true that the receiver undoubtedly reaps the benefits, one could argue that, in fact, the giver reaps even more benefits. The giver often leaves the situation feeling fulfilled, like they’re a part of something bigger.
Research has even shown that giving impacts the giver in several positive ways, particularly for older adults.
A study conducted by Carnegie Melon University showed that older adults who volunteered for 200 hours or more a year had a 40% decreased risk of suffering from high blood pressure. Another study from Cornell University found that environmental volunteers were 50% less likely to suffer from depression in future years.
Giving selflessly is also one of the most powerful ways to build your personal brand. You’re able to reinforce what your brand is about while also providing clarity to help others help you. When they truly understand your brand’s purpose, they’re more able to help build your brand on your behalf.
What are some ways you can give to build your brand?
You can donate money, food, or clothing to organizations whose cause you’re passionate about. You can offer your time to an organization and help them reach their goals. As mentioned in a previous post, volunteering is also an excellent opportunity to expand your network and develop meaningful relationships.
Perhaps, one of the best ways to add value to your relationships is to offer members of your network an idea without expecting anything in return. Inevitably, the act will come back to you. In fact, a study conducted by London School of Economics showed that those who regularly gave were between 7% and 16% happier than their counterparts.
Another way is to simply show appreciation to those who are a part of your network. Challenge yourself to send a note to one different person each day for a week and let them know how much you appreciate them.
Or how about connecting two individuals in your network who could benefit from working with one another? This presents a dual opportunity to impact the lives of two people who, in turn, will likely return the favor. If you’re meeting someone for the first time, try, mentally running through your network and identifying one to two people that person could benefit from knowing.
How will you give today?
Giving back to those around you provides your brand a purpose and shows that you stand for something bigger. Challenge yourself to find a way to give back to your network that helps to reinforce your purpose and make it a part of your personal branding strategy. You might just find that the benefits come back to you ten-fold.