What if I told you that just because you CAN help someone, doesn’t mean you SHOULD?
Does it feel icky?
Do you feel like a selfish jerk?
I get it… I really do.
But here is the thing, sweet one… as a recovering over-giver, I have a bit of advice I’d like to share. You can take it if it resonates for you, and leave it if it doesn’t. (Please kindly hold back any eff yous, etc. I get it, I’m not for everybody.)
These are the side effects of over giving:
- You burn out
Now this may seem obvious, but bear with me… You know when you’re in an airplane and they give the spiel about the oxygen masks and how you need to put yours on before helping someone else? Sames goes for giving. When you give at your own expense, and you start to burn out, guess what happens? You’re not able to give anymore.
So setting healthy boundaries, including time to recouperate, will help you keep your batteries charged, and you willing/able/ready to serve. Because that’s what it’s all about, right?
- You get taken for granted
Here’s the shitty thing about human beings… we don’t always appreciate what comes easily. So when we’re always giving, (and of course, not letting people reciprocate because it’s hard for givers to learn to receive) we’re not always appreciated and we can easily set ourselves up for being taken for granted. This is an easy time to slip into victim mode… “Why does this always happen TO ME?” But that’s not it at all. We play an active role in how others treat us, so if they’re taking and not giving back, that’s because of the rules of engagement that WE SET.
What can you do? Change the motherfluffing rules! You’re a badass, beautiful, and you don’t have to keep playing the game the way you always have. Set some boundaries, say no, only give what you’re comfortable giving, and ask for shit in return. (More on this later.)
- It stops feeling good
Givers feel good when they give… but they don’t feel good when they burn out, or when they feel taken advantage of. That makes them feel RESENTFUL which is one of the ickiest feelings there is. Giving should light you up. It should make your soul sing. If it doesn’t, it’s not in alignment, so head back to the drawing board to find a way that will make you feel warm and fuzzy from top to toe.
You totally deserve to feel that good, I promise.
About asking for shit in return
I promised I’d come back to this, so here it goes. Today in my mastermind, a colleague was discussing someone she was providing some free services to, and the person was not only unappreciative, they were also unwilling/able to really do the work. She is investing her time with ZERO return. Now… return doesn’t always have to come in the form of financial exchange. (That’s nice though, isn’t it?) Sometimes return looks like:
- a new subscriber to your list (via free content)
- a glowing testimonial
- a killer item in your portfolio
- word of mouth promotion
- a happy feel-good feeling in your tummy
Giving (whether it’s time, content, money, expertise, what have you) has to come with some sort of a return. If it doesn’t, you need to reevaluate. You will likely need to pivot where you’re investing yourself so that your business gets some goodness back. Don’t give because you’re afraid to say no. Give because it feels good and you’re getting something valuable in return.
Because here’s the thing, sweetness…
Giving is an exchange of energy. Which means you also need to get something back. If you use up all of your time/energy/resources giving to people with zero return, you will have nothing left to offer your dream clients who are just WAITING to gobble up your content and hand over their money.
Let me repeat that.
Your dream clients are WAITING FOR YOU. Don’t miss them because you’re spreading yourself too thin elsewhere.
Sending you love!