The pressure is on to celebrate holidays on the day they are designated, including having Turkey on Thanksgiving Thursday, doing shopping on Black Friday, spending more money on CyberMonday, and then more money but for less selfish causes on Giving Tuesday. But, what if you’re working on Thanksgiving, have overspent on buying amazing food for your team on meal day, or don’t get paid until the end of the week following Thanksgiving? Should you be wracked with guilt?
What makes #GivingTuesday special is the PR surrounding it and the fact that it does get people to give on a day they might not otherwise. What makes it dangerous, is it also promotes more spending when people may not have the money to spend. Sure, it’s likely better to spend some money on Giving Tuesday than any money on Cyber Monday, but if you’re wallet is tight — money is money. What if you missed #Giving Tuesday?
Give next Tuesday, or even the Tuesday after that, or ….. on any given Monday.
In her book The Soul of Money, Lynne Twist explores our relationship with money and introduces the concept of sufficiency versus abundance. Money, Twist argues, is called currency because it flows like the currents of water, and has value in its flow. It has no intrinsic value other than what value humans give it. How you spend or donate it can have more meaning if you spend it in concert with your values. This can range from donating to causes dear to your heart, to not buying or supporting products that don’t share your values.
Twist changed her own relationship with money when she experienced first hand how some of the poorest people on earth lived rich, fulfilled lives while some of the richest felt spiritually empty despite all their financial holdings. Her Soul of Money Institute provides affordable courses to allow people to reshuffle their relationship with money and put their money to good use both for themselves and others.
Related Post: From 2016 – 4 Ways to Give #GivingTuesday Political Clout
Certainly there is no lack of choices on political donations from political parties, to political candidates and political causes. Another way to give is based on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs — sending money to places where it best provides safety and security for the most. Suggestions include Charity Water, which provides clean water solutions to children and families around the world to Habitat for Humanity, providing homes for those in need. Regardless of your designated charity, consider ongoing albeit smaller monthly donations throughout the upcoming year. This takes the decision making fatigue out of choosing an new charity each pay period, and allows you to go deep rather than wide. At Charity Water, they call this being part of the Spring project — providing an ongoing well of new clean water opportunities.
If money feels tight, it can be liberating to find some small amount to give to others in more need. It helps put things in perspective and remind us that even in the Trump era many of our issues are still First World rather than Third World. We can rant about Trump’s prejudices, insensitivities, and small mindedness, or we can fight by just getting started in being magnanimous ourselves even in small ways. That’s Little Hinge thinking that helps each of us contribute in whatever small ways we may have available and make a difference. Don’t think small donations matter? Revisit the power of Bernie Sanders long list of $10 donors versus other politicos large donor bases. Or, ask any charity about the power of penny brigades. Pennies do add up so start small and think big. It’s the consistency that really counts.