The Unboxed Life: Giving

By November 17, 2011 Inspiration 10 Comments

One side of our life needs to be boxed in, and another needs to be unboxed. Our unboxed life needs to be spirit-led, soul-inspired.

We hear words like “listen to your spirit” or “reach into your soul” and, at times, it just seems like a lot of nonsense. Yet, we know it when we feel it, and we know it when we hear it. Both come from within, soulful and spirited-minded.

Maybe similar to the financial aspects discussed previously, past practices were more disciplined, which may have resulted in a more controlled inner spirit. We remember our parents and grandparents religiously going to church every Sunday, having devotions every evening, and ensuring their faith routines did not get off track.

All through this, few outward expressions of their doubts or passions were made. The inner spirit was boxed in, surrounded by discipline, combined with a sense of community. Good works were done; it is just their inner spirit may not have been as free to explore or do out-of-the-ordinary good works.

The Unboxed Life

As we fast forward to our lives today, our discipline is more lax and, consequently, our inner spirit is not as controlled. We may have strayed too far from some spiritual practices, whatever they may be, or we may have become too overwhelmed by all the options today to “get in touch” with our inner spirit.

While the financial boxes have been about collecting stuff, the spiritual unboxing is about giving. In the act of giving, it creates a continuous flow, unending breezes and winds across the prairies of what is inside us as well as in what we do on the outside – constant change, continuous inspiration.

Giving is a fundamental element to an unboxed life. It may be the core practice.

Here are four giving tenets for living an unboxed life.

Tenet 1: Giving equals receiving. We have always been taught it is better to give than to receive. While generally true, it is also true that we receive when we give. When we lend a hand, we gain a firm grip back. When we listen closely, we gain knowledge. When we offer an idea, we gain feedback.

We give our voice, time, and talents to others. In doing this, there is usually reciprocation. Sometimes, it is directly from the same person; other times it is in a sense we gain of satisfaction or a want to do more.

I believe that in every time we give, we receive something back.

Tenet 2: Giving equals experiencing. When we give, we are in life’s arena. It means we are interacting, participating, and doing. We are getting our feet and hands dirty; we are using our minds. We are not sitting back enjoying the view. We are creating a view through our work. Experiences open up our mind and spirit to new sparks of action and thought.

I believe that in every time we give, we are experiencing life at its fullest, filled with a desire to do more.

Tenet 3: Giving equals getting better. Each time we give, we get better as a human being. Although what we can give is limited, the more giving we can do, the better we will become. Giving brings in knowledge. It is in the practice of giving we learn, grow, and expand our perspectives. We are not sitting stale. We are involved and, through this involvement, we are taking in as much as we are giving out.

Giving is like a deep conversation. The more we offer, the more we get back. All involved will leave knowing more and having a higher sense of understanding.

I believe that in every time we give, we are improving ourselves in the best possible way.

Tenet 4: Giving equals living with spirit. When we give, the barrier around our inner spirit begins to break open. Our practices give it light. Our practices open our spirit up, and we want to do more meaningful things with our life.

We give it all in our community, and it gives back fuel that keeps our passion and mission burning with action and progress. We live an ignited life, meaning it is invigorating from the tips of our fingers to the gray matter in our head to the unexplainable spirit inside us.

I believe that in every time we give, we are living an example of a full, meaningful life, which spurs us on as well as others around us.

The unboxed life absorbs and employs. It is about giving.

Giving isn’t about stuff. It can be our thoughts, writings, art, hard work, charity, time, and the list grows. There is so much we can give. Through this, we open up our inner spirit, our soul, to all the essential elements. They rush in and create more sparks of creativity and action. An excitement blooms in all that we are, and we become more connected to our true self, our true mission, and our community.

The unboxed life is not about collecting; it is about giving. In our giving, we are exposed to a wonderfully spirited life!

What do you believe giving equals? Leave your thoughts below.

Jon Mertz
Jon Mertz is one of the Top 100 Thought Leaders in Trustworthy Business and highlighted as one of the Leaders to Watch in 2015 by the American Management Association. He also is the author of Activate Leadership: Aspen Truths to Empower Millennial Leaders. Jon serves as vice president of marketing at Corepoint Health. Outside of his professional life, Jon brings together a community to inspire Millennial leaders and close the gap between two generations of leaders.
Jon Mertz

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