The secret to feeling better about yourself – it’s only one simple step away
Do you like feel good about yourself? In fact, when was the last time you did feel great? All it takes is a simple choice you need to make, and $100 for starters. Besides of feeling elated, you get another surprise present to top off the experience.
I learned this from my friend and mentor Dr. Tom Hill and made it my own. No, this is not a measure that trades money for feeling better. Pick any amount that works for you. I always have $100 extra in my wallet. I consider this money not to be mine. It belongs to whomever I meet who needs it much more than I do.
That leads me to elaborate on the one choice you will need to make. It’s simply taking the step to actively help someone else. The amount of money is essentially inconsequential. Depending on the situation $10 and even $5 can be a lot of money to someone in need.
How do you decide to whom you should give this money? Ideally, you should make a point of giving away the $100 once a month. I have settled for opening my senses to situations when my life’s journey puts me into the path of people whose money this is. Those are the times God is talking to me. Just watch out and you need not wait long and you too will be rewarded with plenty of people and situations when it’s your time to help.
Here are some examples of mine when I have been blessed with situations where I was glad I could help:
- Coming back from a long flight at the Philadelphia airport a woman approached me asking if I could spare a little change for her to get home. This poor woman had been stuck at the airport all day, with her luggage still on the cart and she was embarrassed about not having enough cash to pay for transportation into the city.
- Another trip later coming home from PHL I stopped at a convenience store getting myself a cup of coffee. While walking outside towards my car I noticed a man standing right next to his car that had a blown out tire on the passenger side (the tire had a huge hole in the sidewall). He looked so desperate and I asked if I could help him get the spare installed. He answered that this had been his spare and he did not know what else to do as he had neither a credit card nor did he have cash.
- Another time the kids and I drove through a fast food drive through when a homeless person asked me for money. I gave him money and made sure that he did go inside to buy himself a dinner – something he so obviously had not had in a while.
- While in Philly on the way to a recent event I came across a very young homeless woman in the streets. I gave her the money and went about my way. When she realized how much money this was she thanked me over and over. Looking into her eyes told me everything I needed to know about her life. I saw and sensed unbelievable and unspeakable pain and suffering.
I am sure that so far I found the rightful owner of the money in my wallet every time. All of them have blessed me and my life beyond measure – more than the money could ever buy.
There is one condition with giving out money or lending a hand: You must not expect anything in return – ever! There is not a bank that converts your good deeds into some sort of life extending currency; you will not be able to collect brownie points for good behavior that you can exchange for anything else on Earth, or perhaps at the pearly gates. You do this truly only on behalf of someone in need. Period.
Only this way you will get the surprise reward. Your present is the sense of wonder that the moment leaves you with. How will this situation change the person? Will their lives get better? What will their choices be what to do with the money? Will they help someone else too and thus help perpetuate the random acts of kindness? Isn’t it wonderful to think about all the different possibilities and choices that your single act can set off?
Do not get me wrong here. This measure cannot fix the big issues like homelessness, addiction, etc. Guess what, it is not supposed to either. What it will do though is to give hope. Hope leaves us last, but it comes back quickly when a small act of random kindness lets you master another moment or day. Who knows what your contribution can do? You have got nothing to lose, but you will feel great as you will have fulfilled your purpose. Just remember, you do not do this for yourself; you do this for others.