One of the most stressful experiences that I have ever had with money is “lending” it out.
It was so awkward asking people to pay me back whatever amount I lent them. When you have a lack mindset you really believe you need that money. You hound people until they pay you back. That is not good if these relationships matter to you.
The only people that should hound others for money are those that get paid to do that like collectors and banks.
If you manage to get people to pay you back, there is an ill feeling that follows. It’s a lose, lose situation. It feels weird to ask for the money and it feels weird to get it back.
What doesn’t feel weird is giving money without expecting it to be returned. It feels great!
Evidence shows that giving and helping others is good for one’s health.
- Reduces isolation
- Sense of belonging
- Feels good
- Helps keep things in perspective
My recommendation is for everyone to incorporate giving into their lifestyle. How?
- Create a giving category in your budget
- Once or twice a year pay for the car behind you when picking up coffee or food
- Take chicken soup to sick family or friends
- Donate to your child’s classroom
- Buy a book that you love for someone that you think will enjoy it
- Surprise your family with an act of kindness or their favorite home-cooked meal
- Help someone move or do home repairs
- Invite someone to walk or coffee
What I do most consistently from this list is allocate a certain amount to the giving section of my budget every month. It is always the same amount. Once it’s gone then I have no more to give that month. If there is a dire situation then I pull money from my Christmas sinking fund. I am not allowed to pull from anywhere else.
There are many times when I have to say no or when gifts are very small. It doesn’t feel bad saying no, when you have already given. I actually feel empowered saying no and a sense of peace.
Giving instead of lending money has been one of the best wellness decisions of my life.