Founder Story: Give
I was always the guy who was “too busy” for certain things in life, and conscious giving was one of those “things.” That’s why having a give calendar process really changed things for me.
Here’s what worked for me.
- First, I came up with topics that interested me. I asked myself, “What topics would I be really EXCITED to donate my time or money to?” For me, it was arts & culture, the environment, justice, animals, and community development. This was an important step because I knew if I wasn’t passionate about it, then I wouldn’t feel “connected” to it and I wouldn’t keep it up.
- Next, I found nonprofits that focused on those topics. I tried to stay local, because I wanted to really feel the impact at a local level. For the arts, it was the Nevada Ballet Theatre, the Las Vegas Philharmonic, etc. For community development, it was Girls Rock Vegas, Casa de Luz, Three Square… For animals, it was the Nevada chapter of the SPCA. That kind of thing. Now I had a roster of great causes to choose from that I was passionate about. I kept them in a Note in the Notes app on my iPhone.
- Then in the same note, I listed out every month of the year BUT LEFT THEM BLANK. So it just said “June 2022,” “July 2022,” etc.
- Next, I set a reminder for the 1st of each month using my Reminders app. The reminder prompts me to choose and act on my monthly contribution.
- Finally, I take action! Whatever I picked, I would fill in the nonprofit in my note so I had a record of what I’d chosen in past months and so I could see my contributions grow. Oh, and I marked the reminder complete!
I’m a completionist and a great checker-of-boxes, so this technique worked out GREAT for me. But that doesn’t mean it’s the right approach for you. Whatever your process, figure one out, don’t delay, and you’ll be glad you did. I wish you luck and courage.
And let me just close by saying this: even if you’re not consistent from month-to-month, keeping this practice as a regular thread in your life is so good for your soul. I’ve been keeping a give calendar for almost 2 years now. I have a lot of fun each month picking from the list and contributing to one of these wonderful causes. It’s a nice little smile for me at the beginning of each month. It’s certainly more than just “checking the box.” I think pretty soon, I won’t even need the reminder.