As the holiday season approaches, you might start preparing your list of chores: clean the house, haul the decorations down from the attic, and shop for gifts. Since stress often comes part-and-parcel with the holidays, however, it pays to focus on the spirit of giving instead of the department-store maze.
Spread the Spirit
It turns out that "Pay It Forward" isn't just the title of a movie. A study revealed that generosity actually becomes contagious when others witness or benefit from the act. If you donate to a worthy cause or selflessly help someone you know, the people involved in that transaction feel inspired or motivated to emulate your generosity.
The money you donate to your favorite charity and the generous gift your best friend unwraps during the holiday season could spawn a network of similar acts. You might not know about them, but they exist. If you aren't sure how to start giving of your time or money, consult a phone psychic to ask about how your gifts might benefit others.
Giving Doesn't Mean Spending
Many people suffer from holiday guilt. They worry that they don't have enough money to give the people they love extravagant gifts, so they believe they have nothing to give at all. However, the spirit of giving doesn't have anything to do with cash.
In fact, giving your time and energy sometimes means more than writing a check. You're donating something you can't get back. If you spend a few hours cleaning your elderly relative's home or building homes for the poor, you'll never reclaim the hours you spent.
Don't think about your bank-account balance when it comes to the spirit of giving. Instead, reframe the issue in terms of helping others. Maybe you have a talent or skill that could make someone else's life better.
Reap the Rewards of Giving
Giving your time, energy, or money to others can benefit you as well as the recipient of your generosity. Studies have shown that generosity can lower the giver's blood pressure, improve heart health, relieve depression, and even extend your lifespan.
Those benefits can extend beyond the holiday season. Use the month of December as an excuse to experiment with generosity in all of its forms. After the new year, continue giving of yourself to improve others' lives so that it becomes part of your daily life. That way, you continue to reap these rewards all year long.
Concentrate on How Giving Makes You Feel
When a friend opens a gift you've purchased or made for him or her, you feel excitement and anticipation. As your friend offers gratitude for the gift, you feel satisfied. These feelings reward you for your generosity and inspire you to continue the practice. Listen to those feelings — they'll help you take advantage of the spirit of giving.
You might still experience stress around the holiday season and feel frustration when everything doesn't turn out just the way you planned. However, focusing on the spirit of giving can help you process those stressors. If you feel overwhelmed, turn to a psychic online chat for guidance.