make_peace_money_4 In creating an abundance mindset, the power of giving is not to be underestimated.  In a world where we so often focus on what we need, you may from time to time find yourself longing to give.  Giving and receiving are two equally important actions, part of the flow of the energy of money.

When you are at peace with money, you are likely to be more at ease when invited to give.  Ample opportunities to give money exist, charities and causes, and people to help.  Yet when you aren’t at peace with your money, a request for a donation can feel annoying.

Being at peace with money means being free to look at whether giving is right for you at that moment. Should you choose not to give money, you can still wish the person or the venture well, giving of the energy of your good thoughts instead of, or in addition to, your monetary wealth.

A long time ago I was going through a particularly stressful period. Laid off from my job I felt depressed. My demeanor, I know, was dour. My coach challenged me to give something away each day. I baulked, “Don’t you recall? I’ve just been laid off. I’m broke!” She smiled broadly as she replied, “Of course, I know that.” Then she asked me to find at least one smile to give away each day for thirty days. To say it was difficult at first would be an understatement. I didn’t think I could do it. It felt forced. Yet I stayed committed.

To my surprise, I was soon looking for opportunities to smile at people, discovering the delight I felt when they returned the smile. About three weeks into the challenge, a harried-looking older woman stopped me saying, “Do you know how long it has been since anyone really looked at me and smiled? I can’t recall the last time. You’ve made my day, dear. Keep smiling.” I’ll never forget that. What is the cost of a smile, after all? A mere moment? To boost a person’s mood for the day? Sweet.

Recognize the power of giving in your own life, and the joy you take in giving to others. Contrast this feeling with the fear and need to grasp or hold on in perceived “tight” times. Which is more expansive? Which brings more peace? Generating gratitude and letting it guide you is a powerful tool available to everyone in seeking peace with money.

If you would like to up the ante, create a “Giving” journal and write daily for one month.  Note at least two things you gave each day, even if only a smile, a hug, or listening to a friend. Challenge yourself to give regularly of your belongings or money, and also challenge yourself to give things that are not money-related.

Lorna McLeod is author of the forthcoming book, Make Peace with Money, and a certified financial coach and trainer.