Some of us get into the rut of compulsive giving. It comprises of charitable acts that are motivated, not inspired, driven by selfish feelings of shame, guilt, obligation, or ego. Intentional giving and learning to be a healthy giver can get difficult.
Compulsive giving and excessive caretaking essentially communicate that we’re still a victim. We end up giving too much and later when things backfire, we feel agitated, confused and frustrated.
It’s important that we let go of these compulsive cycles and give with intention. As Melody Beattie puts it, “Healthy giving is part of healthy living.” Like other things in life, we need to seek balance in giving as well. We can give whenever we feel inspired by a true desire to give, with respect and love for ourselves and others.
We need to decipher our true motives behind giving, and understand if we’re giving for our own selfish interests or for others’ benefit. We need to identify if we’re giving out of responsibility, or giving because of empty selfish emotions such as guilt, shame, pity or moral superiority?
When we give with purpose, that’s when we make true change in the world. Giving should help others in a positive way and not be a mere act to prove something to ourselves and others.
Some of us know how to give intentionally, but it can be a challenge for others. It takes time but we need to learn how to give in healthy and constructive ways. We need to strike a good balance between giving and receiving. Otherwise, it would tarnish the authenticity and deteriorate the well-being of our interactions, connections and relationships sooner or later.