Trawling around in cyberspace the other day, when yes, I should have been doing something else, I came across something called the 7-Day Holiday Giving Challenge. It seemed the perfect antidote to Christmas season fatigue.
Seven days, each day focusing on giving rather than taking. Here is how it works:
Day 1. Be spontaneous. Go through your day with your eyes open and watching for unexpected opportunities to give.
Day 2. Go for the green give. Give a reusable grocery bag to someone using “paper or plastic.” Walk more and drive less today.
Day 3. Help those who can’t help themselves. Donate some clothes to The Salvation Army, Goodwill, or a local shelter.
Day 4. Give back to the world at large. Contribute to an organisation that sends care packages.
Day 5. Acknowledge those who often go unnoticed. Make things easier for someone who could use the help.
Day 6. Go for the simple give. Bring something freshly baked to the office. Let another driver merge in front of you into busy traffic.
Day 7. Spread some holiday cheer.
The woman behind the Seven Days of Giving is Cami Walker and hers it seems is a very interesting story. Some years ago, suffering from multiple sclerosis, she was advised by an African healer, to give 29 gifts over 29 days. Desperate for something to take her out of the pit of illness, she embarked on this crazy quest, and some time in found her symptoms subsiding and her life turning around.
“By giving,” the healer told Walker, “you are focusing on what you have to offer others, inviting more abundance into your life.”
The gifts, she said, could be anything—but the giving had to be both authentic and mindful.
“I was sceptical, but I tried it. And I was amazed by what unfolded during my month-long journey. Many of my gifts were simple yet the acts of kindness were transformative. By Day 29, my health and happiness had improved,” said Walker.
From this experience came a website, and a movement, and Walker has inspired spontaneous giving all over the world.
Walker’s experience is chronicled in her memoir, 29 Gifts. I haven’t had a chance to read it yet but I have to say, it sounds fascinating, simple and inspiring. In the meantime, I have just started my own personal 7 day challenge in this last, pre-Christmas week.
Any one want to join me?
Here is Cami Walker explaining what it is all about.