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“You will get everything in life that you want if you just help enough other people get what they want.”
-Zig Ziglar-

That’s just backwards, isn’t it?  Give other people stuff that they want and then you will automatically get stuff back, right?  That’s not what we teach our kids is it?  That’s definitely not what we learn about on TV.  I mean, when your birthday comes, you GET presents.  You don’t give them.  When Christmas comes, you give some presents but you mostly GET, right?  Isn’t that what is supposed to happen?  Besides, what does this Ziglar guy mean by helping ‘enough” people?  How do you know when you have helped enough people?  From a business perspective, does that even work?  So, are you supposed to give stuff away to people for free and then eventually you will get what you want?

I’m not sure if I have the exact scientific answer to this.  But, it seems that success rarely happens individually.  You know those sayings, “it takes a village…”, “no man is an island…”, “together we stand…”  It seems that although we are bred to be independent and stand on our own, the opposite is true.  We need other people.  We need to lean on others.  So, by definition, feeding enough people makes enough people strong enough and available for you to lean on.

Now, I’m not saying that you should give away things solely with the intention of of getting something in return.  And I am not saying that you should do everything for free.  What I AM saying is that there is something to the whole idea of giving and what it does to your psyche and the feelings of others that you give to.  You see, we all want something.  We all NEED something.  So, if I know that and I look to take care of people in that way, eventually it will come back to me.  My business coach said to me once that if I wasn’t seeing a profit in my business or other areas of my life, it simply meant that I wasn’t providing enough value to enough people.  Translation:  I wasn’t helping enough people get what they want.  We didn’t talk about selling.  We simply spoke about helping people get what they want or what they value.

Seth Godin wrote today about harvesting.  Sometimes you are so concerned about your fair share that you forget to plant.  Seth noted that if you continue to plant, you will never have to worry about the harvest.

Picking up my garden tools right now, Seth.

What do you think about this theory?

Join the discussion 2 Comments

  • Kenisha -KC Communications/MAM says:

    This is a great article with excellent points. I think sometimes we get so focused on what we can get out of a situation, we forget to serve that person or situation. Our own needs are important for sure, but it’s also important to give of self and not expect you’ll get something in return. It does seem though, when we give, we usually get too. Nice balance of life sometimes.

    • Yes, that “get” doesn’t always happen immediately. I think that’s what causes some people not to recognize it. Or people have a “get expectation” and when it doesn’t come in that way, they feel differently. Thanks for your thoughts.

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