Be More Generous with What You Have

When I ask wedding business owners if they are as generous as they want to be, they usually say “no.” This is a generous bunch, too. No matter how generous they’re being, they wish they could do more. Most of them feel they can’t give as much money as they want to because they aren’t making enough.

And that totally sucks. Because when you think of yourself as a generous person, but you aren’t being as generous as you want to be, you feel stuck. Your hands are tied. And you might even feel powerless.

Instead, realize that generosity isn’t just about money. It can be so much bigger than that. It’s time to get creative about how you express generosity. Maybe it’s spending a little more time with someone or giving a potential client (who is overwhelmed or in a hurry) fewer options to make things easier. It could be sending a note in the mail or offering some timely advice to someone who really wants it. It’s not about what you don’t have, it’s about being generous with what you do have, with what you love to do, and with what you’re good at doing.

Instead of feeling like you can’t give the way you want to, ask yourself, “What do I already have that I can give away?” Once you start looking, you’ll never run out of new ways to be generous.

If you want to find out how being creatively generous in business can make you a magnet for top-tier brides, sign up for the free teleclass (live on Wednesday, October 23, 2013) I’m co-hosting with Kathy DalPra from Bride Appeal at


Are you afraid to be generous?

“No one has ever become poor by giving.” – Anne Frank

Photo Credit: Wikipedia

Photo Credit: Wikipedia

What’s keeping you from being more generous? I have to admit, I’ve rationalized not giving money to people on the street who ask me for it with the thought, “if I gave each of these people what they asked for, I’d go broke.” It’s not really true. When I lived in Chicago, it would have cost me a cup of coffee or two most days. I was also afraid the money wouldn’t really help. The fear was enough to keep me walking right past them.

Have you experienced the fear of losing when you could have been generous? This isn’t just about money. Maybe a competitor asked you about business. You could have been generously honest, but instead you feared being taken advantage of, so you held back. Whatever it was, you were afraid that by giving, you were giving it away.

I don’t think it has to be that way. I believe that when you give expecting nothing in return, everyone wins. Keep on giving and you’ll have an army of friends. I believe that the way you act attracts certain people into your life and repels others. When you act generously to yourself and others, you attract generous people and you repel stingy bastards.

What would happen if instead of giving something away (and therefore losing it), you give because you have enough (and because you know that it will return to you)? I think this is the first step towards fearless, authentic generosity: acknowledge the fear of losing and then let go of the fear. There are countless roads to poverty, but the generous among us will never be poor.

In their post Why Your Networking Sucks and How to Fix It, Steph & Jeff over at share a great example of how giving just to give ended up saving their necks one weekend.

Where are you afraid to be generous? What might happen if you let go of the fear and put more trust in yourself, in other people, in the universe?

Is generosity Your Crutch?

You’re a generous person. In your wedding business, you go out of your way to help brides. I’ll bet good money that you go the extra mile for your clients. And that you’re at least a little proud of just how generous you are.

And that’s awesome. Except when it’s not.

Are you giving away discounts and extras constantly? Why? The fundamental question you need to ask is this:

Am I doing this because I want to be generous or because I am afraid? Continue reading