Don't Give Up. Give Away.
As my Facebook feed populated with posts about giving things up for Lent—from chocolate to Facebook itself—I wondered:
What if we didn’t give things up, but instead gave things away?
Lent is a Christian religious observance that prepares a believer for what comes next: the death and the resurrection of Jesus Christ (i.e. Easter). It echoes the 40 Days that, according to the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke, Jesus spent in the Judaean Desert, fasting and resisting temptation.
Many people use this opportune time to engage in self-sacrifice. Some do it for religious, others for cultural reasons.
Either way: lots of people are giving something up.
But, if we follow in the footsteps of the Christian lore, did Jesus give something up or did he give a lot away, including, eventually, his own life for humanity’s benefit?
Whatever your religious beliefs or persuasions, I believe there’s a unique lesson to be drawn here—for Christians and non-Christinas alike.
What if, instead of giving something up, in a statement of self-sacrifice, we gave away something in service to others?
I’ve decided to test this theory.
What is my pearl of great price?
It’s valuable. It’s irreplaceable. It’s finite—I only have so much of it.
Therefore, over the next six weeks, I’m going to give away FORTY 40-minute coaching sessions to people who’ve never worked with me.
You are welcome to sign up and please spread the word about it!
To sign up, just send me an email.
If you've already begun your Lenten fast, and have given something up, I hope your experience is a rewarding one. However, if you like the idea of giving something away—or want to add it to your current practice—here are 40 things you can give away that will benefit others during this season.
Be kind for no reason
Send thank you notes to 40 people
Be on time - value other people’s time
Give away 40 items (books, clothing, accessories, furniture, etc.)
Smile at people, including strangers
Pick up after your dog
Call those old friends or relatives
Send thank you notes
Don’t eat animals
Plant a plant
Join a local community board
Teach a class
Adopt a mentee
Donate money to someone or something
Take your kid somewhere new
Give a project to a hungry startup
Make cookies for your neighbors
Water your plants
Send care packages
Turn off your phone to focus on the people in front of you
Volunteer for a charity
Adopt a cat or a dog
Pick up that litter even if it’s not your turn
Help a friend study for an exam or work on a project
Give your parking spot to someone
Encourage someone in private and in public
Host a dinner for international students from your local high school or college
Listen intently (listen to hear, not to respond)
Do someone else’s task or a chore
Take your dog for an extra walk
Buy a beverage or a meal for the person in the line behind you
Sign up to be a host parent to a Foreign Exchange Student
Sign up to babysit your friend’s kids for free
Visit a nursing home
Take your kids to a library
Buy products that support a local business or someone you value, then donate them
Take someone to lunch every week
Give someone a compliment every day
Do something big for someone who could never repay you
Help Adi give away all 40 sessions to 40 people! :)
As always, take good care of yourself. Unless you can take care of yourself, how are you going to take care of others?
P.S. Like this? Please pass it on! :)