One of the biggest reasons why we strive to be financially fit and debt free is to be able to help others.
At Mvelopes, we tend to like the 80-10-10 budget simply because it sets aside 10 percent of our income for giving, 10 percent for saving and the other 80 for our expenses. Taking the time to create and use a budget can not only help us reach that 10 percent goal, but can also help us increase it over time. Imagine things going so well that you can comfortably have a 60-20-20 budget each month.
Giving our money, time, and energy to help others is a fulfilling experience, especially this time of year. So after Black Friday and Cyber Monday think about what you’ll be doing on Giving Tuesday or what you would like to do in 2017 to give back.
Here are four reasons why giving is better than receiving and how to give back responsibly.
Having your finances in order to be able to provide a meaningful contribution to a cause you care about can provide immeasurable satisfaction. A study in the Journal of Happiness Studies found that life satisfaction comes from not only achieving goals, but making progress toward goals and even increased engagement in life tasks.
So, achieving your financial goals and engaging in the things you want to participate in can provide even more satisfaction. Helping others achieve goals will be icing on the cake.
Giving money to worthy causes is great, but finding the right organization to get involved with depends on what you're wanting to get out of it and what kind of help you would like to give. If panhandlers on the way to your office are the people you want to donate to then just make sure you have change or small bills, but if not, do a little research to find an organization that is working to help or solve something that you’re interested in. If you wouldn’t spend time doing it or raising money for it, it may not be a good fit.
Finding what you're passionate about also helps increase satisfaction with your efforts and keeps you coming back to help in different ways. You won't just be sending a check every month to a cause for the tax write off.
Peace of Mind
The second bit of research that will help make giving a good experience is finding an organization that can take your money and put it to good use. Overhead and administrative costs can eat into just how much impact your donation can make. Being able to watch your money go from your pocket to people who need it increases your satisfaction.
There are plenty of options to check out which charities manage their money well and which ones might be better off with volunteers than money (GiveWell.org, CharityWatch.org, Give.org, CharityNavigator.org).
Give it everything
Sometimes seeing people's or animals' faces can make giving totally worth it no matter how difficult or easy what you're doing is. That’s where giving of your time or energy comes in. Helping accomplish something with a group of other volunteers can mean just as much as donating money to a cause. Don’t hesitate to help build a playground, spend time at a shelter or plant trees, because the help is as necessary as the money and in a lot of cases it's even more important.
This time of year be thinking of others and how you can budget your money to make a difference in other people's lives.