Givers are a rarity, so hold on to them when you find them

“If nature has made you for a giver, your hands are born open, and so is your heart; and though there may be times when your hands are empty, your heart is always full, and you can give things out of that–warm things, kind things, sweet things–help and comfort and laughter.”  ― Frances Hodgson Burnett, A Little Princess

Humanity is comprised of three types of people: takers, givers and matchers.

While the first two are more well-known personas, “matchers” are people who will only give when they know they’ll get something back in return.

What kind of person are you?

Over the last decade, I’ve realized that givers are in the minority. While the matchers of the world still brand themselves as givers, that’s only to ease the guilt of their self-serving generosity.

But the genuine givers of the world seem hard to find in today’s society.

Givers are rarely in the spotlight, and never seek any glory from their efforts.

Givers find fulfillment in providing support and compassion to family, friends and friends unknown.

Givers are also frequently taken advantage of – unable to say no when the matchers and the takers of the world request their help.

Fred Rogers once said, “I hope you’re proud of yourself for the times you’ve said “yes,” when all it meant was extra work for you and was seemingly helpful only to someone else.”

I assure you, the givers of the world answer a resounding “yes, they are proud.”

I consider myself incredibly fortunate to have known many givers during my lifetime. Their self-less efforts have been an inspiration to me – something I’ve aspired to, with middling success at times.

One such individual is still a very real part of my life. Her tireless giving is often taken for granted and rarely rewarded or recognized, but that’s not why she continues to do it.

Some might say that givers are trying to fill an insecurity deep down inside of them for love and acceptance. And while that may hold true for me on occasion, for her it’s more of a lifestyle choice – very much like her mother and probably her grandmother before that.

I call upon Fred Rogers again for some words of wisdom: “If you could only sense how important you are to the lives of those you meet; how important you can be to the people you may never even dream of. There is something of yourself that you leave at every meeting with another person.”

May I one day possess the giving power of all those selfless individuals who always put others above themselves. May I discover that the more I give, the more I might inspire others to do the same in their own lives. And may I live with the understanding that, “No person was ever honored for what he received. He was honored for what he gave.” – Calvin Coolidge