Around six years ago I read an article where the author (I wish I could remember who it was, but I can’t) said that every year he would donate 10% of his overall earnings. Not only that. He claimed that since he started donating money, his earnings had increased a lot, every single year, and he believed that it wasn’t a coincidence. Instead he believed it was the “give and you shall receive” principle at work.
The concept seemed intriguing enough, and even if it didn’t increase my earnings, at least I would be helping other people, so I decided to give it a try.
I went with a lower percentage number, but I made it a rule. Every January I sit down to gather the numbers of the previous year, and I put aside to donate an exact percentage of my overall earnings. The only thing that I vary each year is the institution or organization that will receive the money.
Did my earnings increase over these years? Yes, every single year. I don’t necessarily correlate the two things, but I do think it was a very worthy experiment, and I plan to keep doing this regularly every year. In fact, even if you don’t believe in the metaphysical aspects of the experiment, there are some very pragmatical reasons for every one to donate part of their earnings every year. They are:
1. It helps other people
Regardless of the effect it will have on your own life (i.e., regardless of whether or not it will help you make more money in the long run), by donating money to the right institutions and organizations you will certainly be helping other people, and this alone is enough reason to do it.
2. It allows you to give back and to be grateful
If you are in a position to donate money, year after year, you certainly have many things to be grateful for. Even if your earnings are the result of your hard work and determination, some things probably went your way over the years, and some people helped you in one way or another, so give back some and be grateful for being in such a position.
3. It helps you develop an ‘abundance mentality’
By making it a rule to donate part of your earnings every year, you will start to develop an “abundance mentality.” That is, a mentality that you can and will produce much more than what you need, and that there is enough around for everyone. Such mentality will help you make better decisions, both in your personal and professional life.