Day 7: Generosity

Unlocked in a Lockdown - Investigative Selfism

Generosity means that we don’t have to seek reassurance for the self, but can instead concentrate on serving others. It activates a different part of our brain and gives us a more meaningful way forward. – Seth Godin

Let me take you on a journey into the past. Emmm, OK, we’re not going that far back: it’s just Day 1 one of this challenge (sorry!). It was the day I’ve shared my hitchhiking story with you, on how kindly I and my friend Luca were helped on it.

Kindness is memorable, I wrote.

But you know what’s also memorable? Generosity.

That’s because, in a way, kindness is generosity. You’re either giving someone your time, your attention, a helping hand (or, if it’s a heavy suitcase, a helping arm), your empathy, or perhaps something more material. So I’ve chosen generosity to be the closing topic of this challenge because it is such a base for every other lovely quality.

And even if you don’t see yourself as a generous person, the good news is that it’s not an innate quality. It’s a practice, which means we can work on it. In fact, being generous usually feels good on the spot, so if we’re putting efforts to form a new neuroassociation, it shouldn’t be that difficult to do! All we need to do is to set that intention.

Just from this language, you can tell I’m trying really hard to wrap all the previous six days and their topics into this one. That’s true! But that’s because they are closely tied together: one quality unlocks another one, that one leads to the third one, and so on. And it’s truly been a joy for me to have shared all of this with you. Through this challenge, I felt I was being generous myself, and it honestly filled my heart with joy. I had to collect that kindness, self-compassion, and courage, I had to overcome my fears of irrelevance and being seen as an amateur, among others. But that joy of sharing – no matter how big or small the object we’re sharing is – trumps everything. We just have to unlock it.

Tony Robbins, our resource of the day, says that you grow by giving.

As Brené Brown reminds us,

I believe that what we regret most are our failures of courage, whether it’s the courage to be kinder, to show up, to say how we feel, to set boundaries, to be good with ourselves.

I’d say, it is also brave to be generous. As if to expose your kindness can be considered silly, childish, or, even worse, somehow wasteful. Let’s put in a conscious effort not to have those failures of courage.

Let’s strive for, as Seth said in the opening quote, a more meaningful way forward.

Exercise/Reflection

What does it mean to you to lead a generous life? If you were to be generous today, what would that look like? What could be one action of generosity that you could take today?

Resource of the Day

Tony freakin’ Robbins. Of course. Just one of the most known – and loved – people in the world.

In this interview, Tony talks about how he breaks the pattern of someone who’s suicidal, how the most annoying thing in the world is someone who’s rich and unhappy, and how we must raise our expectations of what we can allow ourselves to want from life itself. And he talks a lot about giving.

This conversation is engaging, fun, but also beautifully profound.

By the way, Marie Forleo is a great interviewer, and she’s had Brené Brown (Day 3) and Elizabeth Gilbert (Day 4) on her show, too, among others.

I hope you enjoy it!

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