The Guilt of Not Giving

KB's Journey, Living & Giving

Whether it’s through this blog, on Twitter, or in real life, I like to talk about and promote various ways to give back. And, while I’m sharing ways with you all, I’m also challenging myself to volunteer and look for personal opportunities for myself. Lately though, I’ve been feeling guilty. Guilty that I can’t give as much as I used to. And, I’m not really talking about money but more about my time. During my corporate sabbatical, I would volunteer as often as I could or spend days researching charitable events and initiatives to share.

But now, my time isn’t what it used to be and I have been feeling pretty rotten about it! I know that giving is from the heart and I shouldn’t feel that way, but I do! Can I just tell you how I almost felt like a failure when I lost track of my 29-Day Giving Challenge? Literally. But, I restarted the challenge today and hope that I will complete it on track and guilt-free! Or so I hope.

So, how did I deal with the guilt of not giving?

1. I acknowledged that there are only so many hours (and dollars) in a day.

This is a huge one that I had to learn. While I would love to be able to function on limited sleep (and often do), I’m not superwoman. Although I think I’d look amazing in the cape and tights.

2. I do what I can do when I can do it.

Nowadays, you can find many businesses and nonprofits that offer products or services that also give back to a designated charity. Check in with your favorite charity to see if they have teamed up with any companies lately that will allow you to combine something that you need with your favorite cause. Have a business dinner? Try having it at a restaurant that’s donating a percentage to a local group. You get the point. Or simply give a dollar here or there. It doesn’t have to be much!

3. I remembered that if I felt pressure to give, then I probably wasn’t doing it for the right reasons.

Giving is a selfless act and while many people can gain something from it, that shouldn’t  be (and is not) the point. Remember the true nature of the act and that should help you get rid of the negative feelings.Wishing that you could do more is one thing. Completely bullying yourself or letting others bully you is another.

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