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What are you spending when you are generous?

Feb 8, 2016 at 9:59 AM

safe conversations - social investment through generosity - generosity gameplanSpending one’s self and not just one’s money + spending one’s relational equity (I mean, “all in!”) + spending what we are really best at as volunteers = high octane, social investment.

A social investment like my friends Harville and Helen are making in Dallas Texas.

You met Harville and Helen in my book, Connected for Good, and they are still living out their Generosity Gameplan in grand style (if 50 – 60 hours a week with no paycheck is grand!). Both could be retired very comfortably but instead they are the founders of SafeConversations.org whose goal is to “inspire a relational world by providing couples, families, and organizations with communication techniques proven to strengthen relationships at home, work, school and everywhere.” See Dallas mayor Mike Rawlings’ invitation to a Valentine’s Day weekend Safe Conversations event for the entire city here.

Harville and Helen like to think of giving and volunteering as a social investment. There’s an egalitarian sense of the word: everyone gets to be a giver. Investing is always done in anticipation of a return. “But the return on social investment is that you live in a different and better world,” says Harville. “The return is not in kind but in quality of being.”

“Investing is dynamic,” adds Helen. “Everyone gets to be generous. If you give, that gift gets amplified, and there’s an unleashing of the heart. Instead of you being the only one expressing your generosity, one person’s heart opens others.”

Where are you spending yourself and not just your money? I’d love to hear your stories.

Read my book, Connected for Good: A Gameplan for a Generous Life, to get ideas about how your generosity can bring returns on social investment.

3 responses to “What are you spending when you are generous?”

  1. Margadette Moffatt Demet says:

    John, I will order your book. I am working with two other formators now for some new people becoming involved in the Associates. Your topic is exactly in line with what we will be discussing with them tonight so I have printed out your materials and will have them with me for the discussion. I am also at this moment giving some various considerations once again to my “game plan” My best to you and your wonderful work. Margadette

  2. Gary Wilbers says:

    John I have been serving on a Capital Campaign committee for the last several years to build a state of the art training facility for the athletes of Special Olympics MO. This facility will allow our athletes in the State of MO to have year round sports training. I believe as you mentioned in the article that when you give to something you are passionate about it is not work! It becomes bigger than one person, this has truly been a gift God has given me. I can not wait till the day we open the campus and see the smiling faces of the athletes!

  3. Brad Wilcox says:

    This is another great example of men and women using their talents wisely when it comes to giving generously to others. John Stanley gets how important it is for people to think about generosity in terms of talents, and Harville and Helen are exemplary models of his generosity gameplan.

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