Thursday, October 3, 2013

How To Help People Recognize Your Generosity Without Being Prideful

“It’s not generosity if no one knows about it.” – the other Daniel Day

Note: This blog was written by the other Daniel Day, the guy who is more selfish and conceited than the real Director of Content and Marketing for Axis.

Let me be honest for a moment. It’s fun to be generous, especially when everyone finds out about it. I mean, come on, who doesn’t want to be known as “the generous guy/gal”? But (for most people – not me) it’s hard to let people know about your generosity without them feeling like you’re arrogant, prideful, or being generous for the wrong reasons. So I have created a list of ways you can help people recognize your generosity without them also condemning you as conceited.

1. Use paper checks. Paper checks have your name, address, and phone number printed on the top, and there’s a memo line where you can write in your Twitter handle.

2. Pick up a homeless person to take them out to lunch, but make sure you “forget” your wallet at the office. When you stop by the office to pick up your wallet, remember that it’s rude to leave your guest in the car. Invite him in to the office, but don’t introduce him to anyone. Most likely the extroverts in the office will greet him, and they will want to know how he knows you. Ta-da!

3. Buy Starbucks for a friend with your gold card, but forget to tell the barista that the drink isn’t for you. They will automatically write your name on the cup so that when you leave the drink on your friend’s desk, they will be confused and ask you about it. You will be able to play it off with, “Shoot, I forgot to tell them that it wasn’t for me. I meant to surprise you anonymously, but oh well.”

4. Create a “meal sign-up” for your friends who just had a baby. Make sure you volunteer to take them the first meal, and leave a space on the list to tell exactly what you’re bringing. Type in “Filet Mignon, roasted red potatoes, and spinach salad with chocolate lava cake and a raspberry reduction sauce.” You don’t have to actually bring them a Filet or chocolate cake because things change and you could run out of time. Remember, it’s the thought that counts. McDonald’s is still better than no food at all.

5. Buy flowers and chocolate for your wife, and post a photo on Facebook or Instagram (or both). Your wife and others will just think you’re being sweet, especially when you post something like, “To the most amazing wife in the world. I love you, baby.” Make sure you tag your wife in the photo so that more people will see it.

Those are my top 5. What other ways can you think of to help people recognize your generosity? Comment below and continue the discussion…

Bonus Idea 1 (from my cousin): use your office as the return address for charity donation receipts and leave them on your desk.

Bonus Idea 2: Instead of a check, bring your tithe to church as a wad of $1 bills. When the collection plate (or basket for contemporary churches) comes to you, break the rubber band and drop the wad of cash on the floor (make it look like an accident). If your church has a wooden or concrete floor, consider quarters. Not only will they roll, but they will make a loud crashing sound when you drop them.

P.S. Matthew 6:1-4 reads… 
“Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven. So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”
Daniel Ryan Day has been working as the Director of Content and Marketing for Axis for 3
years, and is the author of Axis' first book Ten Days Without. You can follow him on Twitter: @danielryanday