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Why You Need to Give It Away

Why You Need to Give It Away

    Everyone is looking to make an extra buck these days.

    We all want more clients, a better job offer, a promotion. Nothing wrong with that of course, but why is one of the best strategies to give it away?

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    Well, I’ll give you four good reasons.

    You make connections

    Let’s say you write a free white paper that can help solve a problem, or respond to questions at Answers.com, or give a free health assessment at a train station. You are meeting people and making connections. Granted, most of them will go nowhere, and that’s OK, if you begin to connect with 2 – 3 % of those who accept your offer, you will soon find that you know a whole bunch of people who are interested in you and your talents. You would not have met them if they would have had payed for something, since they didn’t know you and the risk was high. By giving stuff away you reduce their risk to almost nothing and more people will take you up on it.

    You get practice

    One of the best ways to gain experience, especially in a new and untried area, is to give it away. Again, there’s no risk. A company might not be willing to offer you a big salary to come and sell for them, but a church or PTA fundraising committee would be overjoyed if you volunteered to help them. Now you’re gaining experience, getting better at the thing you want to do and creating stories that demonstrate your success to people who will now consider taking a risk.

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    When I was still getting certified as a coach, I began volunteering at the Career Transition Center of Chicago, with a little training, a lot of raw talent, and a willingness to work for free. 200+ clients later, it has been a wonderful use of my time, and it has led to paying gigs.

    It feels good

    Don’t underestimate this. It feels great to do something you really enjoy and have people appreciate it, even if you’re not getting paid. You’re doing “Your Thing,” that will make you feel strong (if it doesn’t, it might not be “Your Thing”), Important point here; don’t just do something because you have to and do it begrudgingly. Do something you love to do, and your joy and passion will attract attention. If you like to write, write a white paper or a blog. If you hate writing, do something else, like create websites or read to sick kids or talk about a favorite topic at a professional association.

    It always comes back to you

    You are investing in the “Good Karma Market”, which always pays out in the long run when something is offered with joy and love. It doesn’t always pay out the way you expect, or on the schedule you would like, but it never fails. That’s not to say you should give in order to get. You should give and trust that you will get what matters. It’s a subtle distinction, yet crucial.

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    To sum up, give because you:

    • Make connections
    • You get practice
    • It feels good
    • It always comes back to you

    Conclusion

    I heard a story (I wish I could remember where) that most people stand in front of the fireplace and say to the fire, “I’ll give you more wood when you start giving off more warmth.” We laugh, but that is the approach many of us take to our careers and lives. Some people, on finding the fire burning hotter by sheer luck, don’t even put more wood in at that point, yet we find ourselves surprised when our career is nothing but ash.

    Don’t be this person. If you put in more wood first, the fire will give off more warmth. Give and give. You will surely receive.

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    (Photo credit: The open hands of woman via Shutterstock)

    More by this author

    Dave Kaiser

    An Executive Coach who helps people make better use of their time, from productivity to living their life's mission.

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    Last Updated on January 25, 2021

    What Should I Do Today? 30 New Things To Do Today

    What Should I Do Today? 30 New Things To Do Today

    It’s always fun to do something new, but often we fall into the trap of spending our weekends the same way.

    If you’re stuck in the same old routine, it might be time to try something new.

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    What should I do today? No ideas?

    Everything listed here is something you can easily do no matter where you live, and even on a tight budget! Try out one of these 30 new things today, you’ll be happy you did.

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    Try Out These 30 New Things To Do Today

    1. Visit a suburb in your city that you’ve never been to before, or somewhere you haven’t explored much.
    2. Learn ten phrases in a new language–what about Japanese, Italian or Portuguese?
    3. Listen to a genre of music you haven’t tried before–perhaps Jazz, Punk or Blues?
    4. Have a picnic in your local park complete with a packed lunch and your animal friends.
    5. Start a daily journal to write your thoughts in.
    6. Try a new cuisine–what about French, Lebanese or Korean?
    7. Visit your local library and borrow some books for the weekend.
    8. Plant some flowers in your garden. If you don’t have one, try an indoor potted plant.
    9. Visit a local museum or art gallery and view their latest exhibition.
    10. Learn a new skill–what about sewing, gardening or cooking? You’ll be surprised what you can learn in an afternoon.
    11. Say hello to a neighbor you don’t usually talk to.
    12. Make a card for a friend and send it to them with a handwritten note.
    13. Learn how to cook a new dish for dinner. We all get tired of eating the same thing, why not try making something new?
    14. Re-read an old favorite book. Don’t leave it gathering dust on your book shelf; get it out and read it all over again.
    15. Research the culture of a different country online–what about India, Guatemala or Sweden?
    16. Go for a walk or bicycle ride around your neighborhood.
    17. Watch a classic film like Casablanca, The Godfather or The Wizard of Oz.
    18. Make a photo album of a recent holiday you took. Don’t let your memories get lost on your computer hard drive; make a special keepsake album of your trip.
    19. Visit your local farmers markets and pick out some fresh produce. Farmers markets are full of delicious fresh fruit, veggies and more. Find your local market and take a visit.
    20. Plan a day trip to somewhere outside your city–it might be the seaside, mountains or another city!
    21. Check out what community events are running in your area and attend one.
    22. Make a birthday present for a friend. Handmade gifts are personal and much more special than anything you could buy from a store.
    23. Attend a play at your local theater. Support your local theater and have a fun night out at the same time.
    24. Volunteer with your local nature conservation society to plant some trees. Conservation societies are always looking for helping hands; do your bit and plant some trees.
    25. Be a tourist in your own city and visit all the popular tourist sites you’ve likely never been to (don’t forget your camera!)
    26. Call a friend you haven’t spoken to recently and have a good long chat.
    27. Put on your favorite song and dance your heart out. You might be surprised at how much fun you have!
    28. Invite some friends over for a BBQ. There’s nothing better than an afternoon spent with good friends and good food.
    29. Try out a new form of exercise like Pilates, tennis or swimming.
    30. Organize a clothing swap with your friends. You’ll have a great time, and save some cash and the environment all at the same time!

    Now that you’ve read my list of 30 new things to try today, my question for you is, “what new things will you try today?”

    Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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