Philanthropy Friday: Leaving a Trail of Gratitude and Perspective

Each Friday, the another jennifer blog shares stories of those who incorporate philanthropy into their everyday lives – personally and professionally – in a creative and unique way. If you have a story you’d like to share, please contact Jennifer.

Wordless Wednesday (5.21.14): LL Bean Trout Pond by Jennifer Iacovelli Barbour

I’ve had a crazy couple of weeks finalizing my divorce and moving. The logistics involved are mind-boggling, but I’m happy to say I’m almost on the other side. When the post I had (somewhat) planned for today didn’t work out, I wondered what I would do to fill this space for the week.

Then, I saw a post a friend shared on Facebook. It was a post from Momastery that spoke to me so deeply, I felt I could have written it myself.

I shared the post and had some friends immediately share it from my Facebook feed.

It’s a post worth sharing here because it’s all about gratitude and perspective. Two things that I have been focused on intensely over the past six months in particular.

Read: Give Me Gratitude or Give Me Debt (via Momastery)

While you are at it, take a look at this post from my good friend Chris Carter at The Mom Cafe. Why?

“Because each time I am presented an opportunity to leave a trail, I am convinced that the power of my words and the very breath from which I speak have a remarkable impact.”

These words from Chris also spoke deeply to me this week.

Read: Leave A Trail Behind You… (via The Mom Cafe)

Giving is so much more than money and time. It’s about actions and convictions. It’s about modeling the behavior we want others to have (particularly our kids), no matter what your situation. Read these posts and let me know your thoughts. I hope they touch you as much as they touched me.

What words have been speaking to you lately?

Read and Make an Impact with Simplicity and Savings #ImpactEzine

At the end of May, I shared with you a guest post from fellow Global Team of 200 members, Lisa Van Engan and Amy Sullivan, for a Philanthropy Friday. They talked about how they joined their shared passion for making a difference by launching an Ezine called Impact.

I’m happy to share with you the hot off the press summer issue of Impact today. This issue is all about living simply and saving while also leaving space for giving back.

I was honored to be asked to contribute to this issue as well. You can find me talking about monthly giving on pages 12 and 13. As a contributor, I had the opportunity to read through the Ezine over the weekend. I can tell you that there are some great tips in there!

Read the summer 2014 issue of Impact with Simplicity and Savings

Cover photography by Mickie DeVries

Cover photography by Mickie DeVries

If you missed the guest post from Lisa and Amy, you can read it here.

Do you have any tips for simplicity and savings to add?

Philanthropy Friday: Moving Forward and Asking for Help

Each Friday, the another jennifer blog shares stories of those who incorporate philanthropy into their everyday lives – personally and professionally – in a creative and unique way. If you have a story you’d like to share, please contact Jennifer. You can view past posts from the series here.

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by GiveForward and contains affiliate links, but the words and thoughts are my own. 

Last week I shared that I am in the process of getting a divorce. It’s not easy to share something so personal, but writing is my therapy and I needed to get what was swirling in my head out. Since the post, I’ve received an amazing amount of comments, messages and calls of support from friends online and in real life.

In the past couple of months, I’ve talked with a lot of people about my situation. I’ve needed advice, information or just a listening ear. My support system has rallied around me, and I’ve come to realize the importance of asking for help.

One of the best pieces of advice I have received so far is to not be afraid to speak up when I need something. People will help. But you have to let them know what you need. Too often people keep their challenges to themselves because they think they should be able to handle it themselves. That others will judge them or simply not understand their situation. There’s often a stigma attached to asking for help, as if it were a sign of weakness.

When I saw that a Facebook friend moved into a new house in the town next to mine, I messaged her and asked if she might give me her empty boxes. Not only did she accommodate, but she offered me free drive by hugs any time I want and an open invitation to visit again and just hang out. And I thought I was just scoring some boxes to use as I prepare to sell my house.

I’ve found that people do want to give to others. They go the extra mile when they know the story and feel the desire to help.

Raise Money for a Loved One in Need. It's Quick, Easy, and Secure at GiveForward.com

Giveforward.com is an online fundraising website that gives people an easy way to raise money for those loved ones in need. I first wrote about GiveForward in 2011. They are worth another mention after 3 years!

As an organization, GiveForward focuses on compassion. As a platform, GiveForward helps to break the stigma of asking for help and empowers those who want to give. Whether you create a fundraiser or give to a fundraiser, you can feel good about helping someone in need. To date, GiveForward has helped raise $98,051,700 towards medical expenses. My post from 2011 noted over $9 million, so it is evident that people have discovered the power of this fundraising platform.

I’ve seen families suffer greatly due to unexpected medical problems and the expenses that come with them. I’ve also seen people rally for those families to lessen the burden. What would happen if they didn’t ask for help? Life would certainly be different.

Have you asked for or offered help to someone recently?

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