Business & Personal By Kim Hegwood

Reasons To Give Money Away, With or Without a Tax Deduction�

"Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude." -Denis Waitley

There is something that happens to your soul when you cut a big check to someone in need.

You signal to those very fears and desires which so often control your unconscious thoughts: "Money does not rule me. I have more than enough, so much more than enough that I am giving it away." Then, of course, something special often happens: more money seems to find itself in your hands.

I am not advocating a mystical pay-it-forward scheme; I am simply making the observation over years of being a student of how money "works". And, "coincidentally" it just seems to find itself in the hands of those who give it away.

Why is it that those who are benevolent seem to be well-taken care of, even rich? I know many families of significant means who were NOT wealthy when they started to give in large percentages of their income (15%+). Coincidence?

So I would say that this first dynamic is one significant reason to give: Your soul is set free from the shackles of fear and greed.

Here are two more big reasons:

2) You build a network of grateful friends and organizations. You will never know when someone to whom you have donated or given (be it time, money, connections, or other resources) comes back to you with something you need, at just the right time.

Personally, I have seen this dynamic in play enough times to not dismiss it. When you act or give generously, it is the most powerful form of networking on the planet. Obviously, there are better, less self-interested reasons to give ... but there sure are worse ones.

3) Your perspective can shift in an instant. When you don't just give money, but also time and heart, you often learn heretofore unrealized reasons for being grateful about your own present circumstances.

Sometimes giving to institutions that work with the poor can bring home appreciation of your own enormous wealth. And it can also bring home awareness of a poverty which is not solved through adding zeroes to a bank balance. But either way, if you do it right, you are changed for the better.

With these reasons, AND the monetary benefits to your tax return, I urge you, Danny: stretch yourself this month. Give more than you think you should. See what happens.

I promise it will be good.

All this said, above, I firmly advocate for being careful with your planning of said giving. I do not suggest impulsivity, just some small risk-taking. Always consult with your accountant!

And do not forget to plan for generational giving, as you do.

To your family's well-planned giving over the holidays...


Kimberly Hegwood

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