It’s often been said that money can’t buy happiness. While that may be true in the intended sense, when put to work for good, money can provide you with the means necessary to spread not just financial wealth but it can also help you gain something much more important – spiritual wealth.
The needs of those around you are great. Your fellow man, maybe even your own family or neighbor, may just be one catastrophe away from homelessness or hunger. At times, it may seem that just one person can’t make a difference. So, just where do you start?
Giving back, whether of money or time, doesn’t have to be a grand gesture or expense. Start small and work on bettering the life of one person at a time. You’ll quickly see that giving back creates a circle of karma that enriches your life both financially and spiritually.
The mental impact of giving back is perhaps the best part of it all. Imagine going to bed at night knowing that you helped someone find shelter or feed their children. Do you need any more incentive?
You’ll find that once you start to give of yourself, the joy and happiness that comes from it will impact every area of your life. The focus of selfish endeavors will quickly shift to questioning how you can help others while at the same time improving your own financial situation.
Naturally, part of getting involved in the local, and even global, community requires putting yourself out there. Meeting new people, forging new relationships and creating a social network with other like-minded individuals can breathe new life into a stagnant social life and do wonders for your career.
Think about one of the major benefits of getting involved with charitable organizations through your employer – an opportunity for career progression. By getting involved you get to meet others within the organization that share your passions, some of whom may just be your next manager or be willing to give you a glowing recommendation for that promotion you’ve been working toward.
Outside of the office, getting involved can help you network with other professionals. This can lead to new job leads, educational opportunities or even serve as valuable information for future entrepreneurial ventures.
And if the spiritual and social gains don’t create enough of an incentive to get involved and give back, consider the direct monetary benefits you can receive from charitable giving.
For those who itemize their deductions on their tax return, a lower tax bill may be in order. The IRS has strict rules and limits on what is and what isn’t acceptable as a tax deductible charitable contribution. IRS Publication 526 can help you navigate the waters of charitable contributions when filing your income tax return. Of course, you may want to consult a tax professional for further clarification or in the case of large donations.
Start small and dream big. What may seem small to you could change the direction of just one person’s life. And, isn’t that a big enough accomplishment?
Photo Credit: Tomas Sobek