If you’ve read any of my other posts, you know by now that the purpose of this blog is to help you learn how to manage money, build wealth, and reach financial freedom. However, I do admit that following this advice can lead you down a dangerous path of becoming very money hungry and greedy. As a Christian, I’ve struggled a lot with my love and greed of money. Matthew 19:24 says, “Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.” This passage scared me to death and is what lead me to become so passionate about giving. This post is a bit different than the others, but I would encourage you to continue reading.
Why Should I Give?
Has anyone ever given you something unexpectedly? Do you remember the smile that it brought to your face? Now imagine if you did that for other people on a daily basis. Giving can be as beneficial for the giver as it is for the receiver. From my personal experience, buying material things for myself brings me joy for about a day, then I’m over it and looking for the next material to bring me joy again. This cycle is endless and leads to selfishness and greed. Therefore, instead of following that path and bringing yourself that short-lived joy, why not give it to someone else? If you’ve never done it, try it. Both of you will walk away happy, and your joy will be much more long-lived.
How Do I Give?
There are a ton of ways that you can give. I actually believe that giving money is the easiest way to give. When you compare giving money to giving time, you will understand what I mean. After you give money, you can always find ways to make it back. However, you can never get your time back. But because this is a blog about money, that’s what we will talk about.
When I say give, I don’t mean that we should be walking around the streets offering everyone we pass a $20 bill. I mean that we need to be selfless, as opposed to selfish, with our money. If someone, such as a family member or close friend, is pressed for money in a tight situation, GIVE! And don’t ask for it back! If you live in a big city, I’m sure you see people that are homeless quite often. GIVE! I don’t believe in giving cash to the homeless but I will give food without hesitation. Buy some extra snacks to carry and give out when you’re walking around, give away your extra pizza after a night out, heck, give away the lunch you brought to work if that’s all you have on you! Get creative and have fun with it! There are a ton of ways to do it but you just have to start doing it.
How Much Should I Give?
Personally, I take a very simple approach. It is very similar to the 50-30-20 Rule. If don’t know about this rule, I would encourage you to go read that post. But to sum it up, it is a wealth-building method in which you allocate 50% of your income to expenses, 30% to spending, and 20% to saving. In order to add giving to the mix, simply decrease your expenses and spending and contribute the extra to giving. However, DO NOT take money from your savings because that would be counter-productive to what we are trying to do. Just spend less on yourself. For instance, you can use the 40-20-20-20 approach. You put 40% of your income towards expenses, 20% towards spending, 20% TOWARDS SAVING, and 20% towards giving. You can alter this approach however you please as long as you don’t decrease your saving, but it keeps everything super simple.
According to Dave Ramsey, you can only use money in three ways: to have fun, to invest, and to give. As we take on this journey, we need to be doing all three. However, I’d suggest that you focus more on investing and giving in the early stages. Once we all achieve financial freedom, we will have more than enough wiggle room to have fun. Thanks for reading and please let me know if you’d like to read more posts like this one.