So many of us make our charitable contributions in a knee-jerk way. For example:
- a friend asks us to support a cause that is important to him or he
- a solicitation is presented that strikes a chord for some reason and we react; or
- we feel an obligation to support a cause due to a past relationship or sense that it is something we just “should” donate to.
But what if giving was an expression of who we were, what we believed and what we wanted to see in the world? What if giving engaged those closest to us in conversations around our values and vision for the future? What if we really explored those issues and made thoughtful and conscious decisions about where and how we wanted to make a difference?
Giving with Heart is possible! But how does it happen?
First of all, it’s important to explore and articulate the values that motivate how you make decisions, your areas of interest, and in what ways you would like to make a positive difference - that is the impact you would like to have.
If you choose to engage your family in your giving, it is possible to first individually articulate your values, interests and desired impact and then come together in a safe environment where you can openly share and discuss these and get to understand more about the commonalities amongst you. Together you could build mission and vision statements that will guide you in how you make gifts going forward.
Giving with heart provides a personal expression of what you think is important. No wonder it is very rewarding.
In future blogs I will describe some exercises that I use to help my clients to articulate their values and desired impact – individually and as a family.