Tag Archives: Giving

The Classic Pamela Positive: The Positives of Serving Others

 

As I’ve found in my own experience, volunteering can be such a positive and valued experience for both the people helping, and the people who need the help. I’d love to share just some of the Positives I’ve observed for volunteers.

 

1- Be A Part of Something Greater. Often new volunteers find that the “product” — serving homeless people, helping microentrepreneurs, tutoring young mothers on their GEDs, is so meaningful that it’s hard to return to the corporate world. They feel a part of something greater, because it is so definitively clear how they are helping. We all want to feel we are caring for and helping others, and are part of a movement larger than ourselves.

 

 

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2- Keep Your Skills Current. Use your current skills and ‘exercise’ them just as you would any muscle. Are you an attorney, administrative assistant, construction worker, public relations expert, manager? Put those needed skills to use, and expand them as you continue your work. Since you are not under the guise of a strict corporate manager, you will have more freedom to expand them in creative ways.

 

3- Attain New Skills and a Second Career. Once you have invested some time at the organization, ask to work in different areas or work on different business units. Express your desire to grow and adopt news skills. Try different areas in order to understand how the entire organization works. Learn for yourself, and learn to become valuable to the organization. You may find a new career!

 

 

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4- Work on a Hobby. Do you love writing on the side? Perhaps you offer to write or contribute to their newsletter. Are you a hidden tech geek? Revamp their website. Is blogging your passion? Help them set up a blog and create a stronger brand presence. Explode a latent desire of your own to help others!

How You Can Give Back To A Youth- Without Money

 

 

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Do you know what some of the greatest needs of our youth today are? Love.

Trust.

Safety.

Kindness.

 

 

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So many of our youth need tangible, practical support.

Here are three key areas:

 

    1. Emotional Support

 

That’s having someone who’s there to listen and to support you with whatever you are feeling, or facing.

 

    2. Inspirational Support

 

This means that you are encouraging them to live their best lives and showing they can take a step forward, they can make a difference in their lives. Eventually, you want it to be not just about them, but about the future world that they’ll help create.

 

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    3. High Level Support

 

These are conversations that help youth understand how the world works and how they can impact the world. This makes them feel like their day-to-day and the world is “navigable”. How in a job they can support their future family. How they can march for freedom. How there is Temporary Assistance for Needy Families to help them get food and day-to-day support.

 

    4. High-Level Attention

 

Many kids have been neglected. They might have been left on the streets. Or they might have parents who don’t have time for them, or don’t wish to spend time.

So how is it, exactly, that you can help? With your committed, High-Level Attention. Here some of the qualities that you can embody with any youth you encounter.

 

 Be

      Nurturing.

Provide a

      friendship.

       Give them

          some love.

    Express

        compassion.

Be

      empathetic.

 

         Affirm every good decision

            and every good word they speak.

   

    Help be a model for caring relationships,

       by caring for them.

 

 

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    5. Recognize Any Accomplishment

During your time with them, you can identify their strengths and I would repeat it often. Remember, they missed out on needed, life-giving encouragement.   Everyone needs to hear that they’re good at something and often.

 

Recognize them for any accomplishment.

 

 

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Celebrate their accomplishments, and often. Bring it up again and again. You’re essentially saying:

 

I see you.

 

I see you too,

Pamela

 

 

Citations:
Fig. 1: Photo by Mm Teng on Unsplash
Fig. 2: Photo by Sue Zeng on Unsplash
Fig. 3: Photo by RhondaK on Unsplash
Fig. 4: Photo by Jeffrey Lin on Unsplash
Fig. 5: Photo by Jason Leung on Unsplash

The Classic Pamela Positive: God Help Me To Become a Clearer More Loving Person

 

God help me to become a clearer more loving person.

To think of others more; myself less.

To listen more carefully; respond in deeper gentleness.

 

 

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To have a quiet centering of appreciation in
morning and in night.

 

To convince myself of joy in darkened dawn’s flittering might
To protect my thought as well as spiritual sight.

 

 

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To see the good, seek the good, see the good again.
To cherish all identity in my family brother friend.

 

To enrich my self’s experience in understanding God’s word.
Constantly grateful, amaze, at His beautifully created world.

 

From Pamela’s journal, 1994.

The Classic Pamela Positive: “When You Learn Something From People…” – Yo-Yo Ma

 

 

“When you learn something from people or from a culture, you accept it as a gift, and it is your lifelong commitment to preserve that gift and to build on that gift.”

– Yo-Yo Ma

 

Yo-Yo Ma

 

 

Appreciate the gifts people offer you…and thank them by passing on their gift to others, whether through appreciation, gratitude, love, recognition, sincerity.  Life and music are about giving.

 

*****

 

Yo-Yo Ma is one of the world’s most famous cellists, and has won multiple Grammy awards. Ma was born in Paris, though the family moved to New York when he was five. He comes from a musical family. His mother was a singer and his father was a violinist; his older sister is also a violinist. A child prodigy, Ma began playing the cello at age four, and performed for John F. Kennedy and Dwight Eisenhower at the age of seven. He attended Julliard at age nine, and went on to study at Harvard. He has performed with orchestras around the world, and has put out 75 albums. Ma currently plays with the Silk Road Ensemble; their goal is to bring together musicians from the countries which are historically linked by the Silk Road, an ancient trade route linking southeast Asia through the Middle East to northern Africa and the Mediterranean coast of Europe.

The Classic Pamela Positive: We’re Going in Different Directions, No We’re Not

 

One morning as I was leaving for work, my mom and I had a very special interchange.  

 

We live in Menlo Park, and I was headed north to San Francisco.  My parents were headed south to Carmel for a bit of rest.  “Have a great day, Mom!  Thank you for having meand now were going in different directions!

 

 

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No, were not,” she said immediately.

I knew exactly what she meant.  Our minds and hearts are going in the same direction.   Shes taught me to be loving and kind.   To follow my heart, and to do what I love to do.  And to live rightly.   And that is what she does with her life. She is so consistently, joyously serving others.  Ive never seen a better model of this.

 

 

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And so, as we parted that morning, we went in the same direction.

The Classic Pamela Positive: A Great Gift: “Call Me Brother”

 

A story I heard and found inspiring:

A famine was on in the land and a beggar on a street corner reached out to Tolstoy, who was passing by. Russia’s great man stopped, searched for a coin but found none. With genuine sorrow, he said: “Don’t be angry with me, my brother. I have nothing with me.”

 

 

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The beggar’s face lit up as he replied,

“But you called me brother–that is a great gift.”

 

 

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The Classic Pamela Positive: Celebrate True Wealth

 

Wealth is a state of mind and life. We tend to associate poverty with money. But poverty can be mental, emotional or Spiritual Poverty. I am often struck by this in my travel and volunteering in developing nations. Often, the divorce rates are low. Families not only stay together, but also spend time together. They gather food from the fields together, cook together and share meals together.

 

 

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Contrast us: 15 minute family dinners if we are lucky. Fast-food and food distanced from its natural base. We eat alone; we eat in our cars. Divorces are easier to get, and in our mind it can be easier to allow those thoughts in as a possibility, rather than work through critical issues. So we lose the connection to family. We lose the connection to the local farm. We can lose the connection to long-term commitment.

 

 

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We lose our greatest asset in natural wealth: relationships. Relationships with ourselves, our families, the earth. This wealth creates happy, balanced, productive, lower stress lifestyles, because we are connected in the way we are meant to be.

Further, we often pass by our heritage and where we come from. In many emerging nations, and especially in the continent of Africa, we see tribes value their connection to their heritage as primary importance even above their nationality. There is a deep-rooted connection to rituals and history which keeps people grounded in who they are, and the deeper, long-term meaning of being a part of a larger community in their lives.

 

 

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Poverty is about money, at times. It has to be addressed as people should have the opportunity to live productive lives and make choices about what they would like to devote their lives to. Poverty is also about our well-being. Often when we get beyond “money poverty,” we forget “well-being poverty,” and get trapped in a go-go-go consumer culture.

 

 

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I hope we can celebrate the healthy wealth that is accessible to us all in positive, committed relationships with ourselves, one another, our families, our earth, our communities and our heritage. How wonderful this is available to us all.

 

 

 

Citations:
Fig. 1: Photo by Lee Myungseon on Unsplash
Fig. 2: Photo by Sai De Silva on Usnplash
Fig. 3: Photo by Ramdan Authentic on Unsplash
Fig. 4: Photo by Tyler Nix on Unsplash