The Power of "Giving Goals"

by Dr. Steve Taubman

(This article was excerpted from UnHypnosis: How to Wake Up, Start Over, and Create the Life You're Meant to Live, by Dr. Steve Taubman.)

Most people, when contemplating their goals, immediately fill their minds with a list of things they want. I call these "getting goals." It's important to have many, many getting goals, objectives for what we want to attain, whether material, spiritual, or psychological.

However, it's rare for anyone to discuss "giving goals," or objectives for what we intend to contribute to the world. I believe that these are the far superior goals to have. While seeking attainment of any kind is natural and normal, and even stimulates an important, deep psychological transformation into possibility thinking, it doesn't feed the soul in the same way as putting one's attention on being of service to others.

Also, in focusing too much on getting goals, it's easy to become selfish and push aside the needs of those around us in an effort to make more time for our own acquisition. At the very least, we'll often postpone the act of giving until we've freed up time from our own busy acquisitional schedule.

Perhaps the most important part of giving goals is their power to transform our sense of isolation into deep connection with the world around us. In the act of establishing a strategy for giving, we must break the process into its fundamental steps. One of the steps for giving is acquiring what it is you'll be giving. Another is discovering what you have to give. So, by using giving goals as a starting point, you'll automatically be forced to develop your strategy for getting as well.

It's one thing to experience working for yourself. If you're successful, you get to enjoy the fruits of your labor, and maybe you share them with others. Maybe. But if you're engaged in giving goals, you're working for the universe. You pay yourself abundantly so as to make the effort worth your while, but you also pay the universe its share. You're part of the flow. You're part of the solution. You're connected to all beings. You never feel selfish because your affluence is a means to an end, and all will benefit from it.

When setting giving goals, you can either choose a percentage of your income to be earmarked for charitable causes, or you can set a dollar amount that you'll commit on a regular basis. By doing the latter, you force yourself to earn a sufficient income to make that contribution amount represent a comfortable percentage of your total earnings. In essence, you're saying, I need to succeed. The world is counting on me.

I personally give five percent of my earnings to charitable causes, five percent to organizations or individuals who have had a spiritual impact on my life (this practice is called "tithing" and has miraculous effects on your abundance. See Mark Victor Hansen's book The Magic of Tithing), and ten percent goes directly to me, before I pay my bills. This last piece comes from The Richest Man in Babylon, a parable which recommends that you pay yourself first, that is before you pay any of your creditors. By doing so, you establish a habit pattern of saving which guarantees accumulation of wealth.

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