A person of value

A giving spirit is not one of self-sacrifice, codependence or martyrdom.

by Bob Burg and John David Mann — 

A shift in focus from getting to giving not only feels great, but also has practical, positive benefits in every area of life, including physical, spiritual, emotional, relational and financial.

Studies show that givers are healthier physically. Spiritually, givers are more in tune with the greater good and our common source. Emotionally, taking the focus off yourself and turning it to helping others makes you happier and more fulfilled. Relationally, the strongest marriages and other relationships grow from a foundation of putting others first.

And financially? Yes, that’s true too. While this might seem counterintuitive, the fact is, those who give the most in value are by far the most successful. This is because when you focus on adding value to the people with whom you do business, they recognize this value. Immediately? Not always. Eventually? Absolutely.

Booker T. Washington said, “No man who continues to add something to the material, intellectual and moral well-being of the place in which he lives is left long without proper rewards.” He was referring to people who add value to those around them.

Webster’s Dictionary defines value as the property or aggregate properties of a thing which makes it useful or desirable. In other words, the qualities that translate into worth in the mind of another.

Your value to others is derived from and defined by what you give. This includes, but is not limited to: time, money, a kind word, a pat on the back, a business referral, a listening ear, encouragement, and even a product or service. The person who comes from a giving place seeks to add value to all. Focus on constantly adding value in everything you do and to everyone you meet.

A giving spirit is not one of self-sacrifice, codependence or martyrdom. The martyr sees the dualism between helping oneself and helping others by viewing these two as being in conflict. The true giver sees no such conflict. The true giver knows that giving is a tide that raises all ships and allows you to be a person of value to others while doing very well for yourself.

To the degree that you focus on adding value to others, constantly and consistently, you’ll determine your worth — in the heart and in the marketplace. High value will translate into improved income, better health, positive relationships and a magnificent feeling of self-worth.


Bob Burg is an author and speaker who seeks to empower individuals and organizations to thrive by working within their principles. John David Mann has been writing about business, leadership and the laws of success for 20 years, and was editor-in-chief of Network Marketing Lifestyles and Networking Times. They are the authors of The Go-Giver. www.thegogiver.com, www.Burg.com and www.johndavidmann.com.

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 27, Number 5, October/November 2008.

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