Is to have the ability to give to others freely without worrying about my own lack.
And I have only recently experienced this.
We paid off most of our debts 2 years back, with the one exception of one bad investment that turned into a money pit that we have to bear up to today.
Then a year ago my husband got a promotion at work.
Early this year, I got mine.
With our 1-year emergency savings checked off, health care covered for the family, and children’s education fund accounted for, we start to reap the benefit of having financial security.
We started to see our monthly savings grow significantly more than what we had in previous years, now in our tenth year of marriage.
Many years back it was a different situation, we were still struggling to pay off our student loan, home loan, and car. I started to get into personal finance back in early 2018, and we became wiser with our choices then.
So what did we do recently that indicated our shift towards being more generous?
We gave my old car away to someone who needed it way more than us.
We could have sold it for a small sum, but we didn’t need the money. We fixed the car up well and transferred it over to a family we knew from church.
I sat in a cab home from work a few days ago, and the driver recounted to me how he lost his job 2 years back during the pandemic, fell into depression, and then earned a living driving after that to support his family, just making enough to get by.
I was glad to hear he recently got an office hour job, but he still drove to supplement his income.
I paid him two times the fee for the ride home, and told him it was a tip (by the way here in Malaysia, we do not tip).
Today I sent a friend of mine who was recovering from dengue fever at her home a food delivery of coffee and cakes from a cafe she liked, hoping it will cheer her up.
Now, this was something I would usually do in the past. In fact, I think I was quite stingy in the earlier years in gifting others, being conscious of our spending and debts.
So having this ability to give without feeling the pinch on my own finances, is literally, quite freeing.
And I encourage you to give too, if you have the capacity to do so.
And if you lack the ability to give financially, you can also give with your time or your skillset.
I will end with a quote by Winston Churchill below to reflect on.
“We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.”