what to give

5 Things to Give Instead of Money

For many of us, money is tight at the moment. Perhaps you’ve got a friend in need of support, or you want to contribute to charity … but you just don’t have any cash to spare.
Thankfully, money isn’t the only thing that you can give. In fact, it may not even be the most useful. Just think about these seven possibilities instead:

#1: Time

However rich or poor you are, you’ve got 24 hours in every day and seven days in every week.

Can you give an hour or two of time to someone who really needs it? That might mean:

  • Taking care of a friend’s kids so she can have a breather
  • Volunteering for a local charity
  • Helping out at a community event
  • Visiting a friend or neighbor in hospital
  • Listening to a relative who needs to talk

#2: Skills

You’ve got a set of useful skills, whether or not you realize it. Instead of giving money, look for ways to give practical help. In some cases, your skills could save someone spending a lot of money on making mistakes or hiring someone to do things for them.

Perhaps you could help with:

  • Teaching a young relative how to cook simple meals
  • Editing a friend’s résumé
  • Designing a logo for a friend’s new business
  • Driving an elderly neighbor to the store

#3: Encouragement

Think of a time in your life when someone’s encouragement made all the difference. Perhaps you weren’t sure whether or not to apply for college, but a teacher or relative supported you. Maybe you were feeling frazzled as a new parent, but friends rallied round.

You don’t need any special skills to encourage someone, or even much time. A few kind words, or a simple note, could make a huge difference.

 

#4: Physical Items

Do you own any tools or equipment that you could give or lend to someone who needs them? For instance, instead of keeping old computers or monitors cluttering up your home, try looking for a local charity or a neighbor who’d be glad of them.

Most areas have a local Freecycle group where you can list any unwanted possessions. When you do that, you not only get to clear some clutter, you also get to do someone a good turn.

#5: Information

Perhaps you know a lot about a particular topic. You might have shelves full of books to lend out, or a bunch of great blog posts bookmarked on your computer. Friends and relatives may be pursuing big goals – but they might not know where to turn for advice and information.

Look out for opportunities to share useful information: that might be in your community, in your workplace, or even within your family.

 

Can you think of any more items to add to this list? Share them with us in the comments…

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_SJQAEJF5QMNQTWHXA7QTETNRMU Amanda

    Ali – great post! Thanks for writing! Skills are worth a lot of money.

  • prathu d

    nice one ……. and its very true

  • Sallyanne

    Lovely , inspiring stuff thanks, Sallyanne

  • http://www.clintcora.com Clint Cora

    Many of the speaking engagements I do, particular my motivational keynotes, are ones I do for free.  The payment I get is often the appreciation that people have after my talks when they tell me that my content has made a difference for them.  Usually, they have been in similar situations that I have been in as described in my talks or know of others who have been. So they can relate to me and appreciate the time I’ve given them.

    The same thing with teaching snow skiing.  The money I make while teaching skiing is insignificant but helping people enjoy the cold winter more is great. It is very satisfying to see some of my ski students who have never been on skis before progress to a point where they are actually buying ski equipment for themselves rather than renting all the time.  This means that they have decided to commit to the sport that I introduced to them.

    Giving my time and expertise in these two areas have made my own life better as I feel a real sense of purpose.

  • http://www.spiralyne.co.uk/ Spirulina

    Great post. And often giving something other than money feels like you’re doing more than when you give money. Even if it was harder to earn the money!

  • Onophovwaejiroghene

    Most people money is everything to help someone with.

  • Onophovwaejiroghene

    Most people money is everything to help someone with.

  • http://www.facebook.com/marita.steffe Marita Steffe

    I like to make things, it is so much more personal than just giving money or buying something. It is also very rewarding to help people with things that are hard for them and easy for me, they love it and it’s a win win for everybody. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/marita.steffe Marita Steffe

    I like to make things, it is so much more personal than just giving money or buying something. It is also very rewarding to help people with things that are hard for them and easy for me, they love it and it’s a win win for everybody. 

  • http://www.awakethebrain.blogspot.com/ Shaggymokola

    Ali this a great article and also  keep it up….but you can also read
    VAL’S DAY GIFT GIVING TIPS .This is the kink to my blog http://www.awakethebrain.blogspot.com/2012/02/valentines-day-gift-giving-tips.html

  • http://lifescheme.blogspot.com/ Personal Development Blog

    Love. I guess this one would fit in the picture. Everybody need love, and by giving yours to others, you are actually helping in making the world a better place to live in.

  • http://www.familyfirepit.com/ karen ho fatt

    We are so focused on material items, we forget about the non material.  Thanks for the reminder

  • http://www.familyfirepit.com/ karen ho fatt

    We are so focused on material items, we forget about the non material.  Thanks for the reminder

  • http://www.howtowakeupearly.org/ Remy

    If the world understands this secret, all the problems will be over.

  • Andre

    This was highly motivational! Thanks Ali