Do you remember that movie with Kevin Spacey where a boy decides to start repaying good deeds with good deeds done to new people?
Fascinating idea you might say but that’s not how the world works. Granted that’s not how the world works. But what if it was?
What if we decided to skip the ulterior motives? To not expect anything back when we give to other people. Regardless of the nature of the gift.
To be polite and civil to one another that goes without saying. Albeit this can be difficult at times. When someone is rude to me I try to feel sorry for them instead of getting angry. They must be in a pretty horrible place in life to have all this hostility towards others!
What if you were to go out of your way just a little bit to help someone else? And not expect an immediate reward. What would happen?
Naturally, some people will be very skeptical. Frantically looking for that ulterior motive. The catch that must be there. So that they can triumphantly exclaim: ”Aha! I knew it!”
Others might be more prone to accepting the gift for what it is. A gift with no strings attached. Whether it’s a thing or your time doesn’t matter. The sincerity of the gift is what counts.
One area where paying it forward works particularly well is children clothes. I am fortunate to receive clothes for my children from families with older kids. I am truly grateful for this as buying all new clothes for 3 children is very costly. For obvious reasons, I cannot repay them the same way. However, what I can do is payback this kind gift forward by in turn giving away clothes that my children no longer use to families with smaller children.
So why can we accept these non-profit gifts more easily when it comes to children clothes? Because we are all aware of the rules of that particular giving. We as a community have agreed to these terms.
What if we expand those terms to include other things than children clothes? This way we can build a community of helping one another.
One of the greatest myths existing is that to get ahead you must step on others. This is so NOT the case! In doing the opposite, helping others achieve their goals, you will also achieve yours. Or you might just end up exceeding them. No man is an island. No woman either. Those who think that way will never be truly successful in their lives.
The will to help others should not be confused with never saying no. Some people are constant takers. Takers of your energy, money, time, things, whatever. There you have to exercise your ability to say NO!
As ripples spread on water, so is the nature of giving with no hidden agenda. Try it out. I can tell you from first-hand experience, it feels great!