Many of us have super-seniors in our family who can remember the 1930’s. When I was young, I used to listen to the older folks in my family, who lived during those times; talk about what it was like. Although there certainly where challenges, I never heard anyone in my family speak of those times or reminisce with trepidation. I actually heard them speak of those times with some fondness. And a typical closing comment usually referenced how they got through it and how those times made them stronger.

I also remember many in my family being more aware of others in need, during other tough times. We didn’t have money, so nobody could write a check to their favorite cause, but my granny (on my mother’s side) and my aunts (on both sides) made bread, pies and cookies; and some would gather clothes that no longer fit but still had lots of wear. It wasn’t much but they did what they could. Most importantly, I recall how it made the fear of the times disappear.

During the 30’s, ‘70’s, late ‘80’s, ‘00-’02 and now in 2008 and into next year, the air is filled with doom and gloom. Many are worried about losing their job, investments and their liberties through government intervention; all of which is or at least seems to be out of our control. Results: Fear and anxiety.

Solution: Give, yes give. Give what you have. If you have money, give it. And even if you give money, I encourage you to give of yourself also. Your time and talent can often be more useful. Give to individuals, as well as organizations. You or your group cannot give and be afraid and worry about these tough times simultaneously.

Although giving solo can be just as pleasing, the undertaking of giving as a family or as a business unit is especially rewarding. Giving is not a spectator sport. In fact, I would suggest that most employees are indifferent to the ‘passing of the hat’. It can be impersonal and often no one knows where the money really goes. Deliver a Christmas tree with all the trimmings, gifts for the kids and a few bags of groceries to a family, sit and talk to an elderly shut-in or work the soup kitchen, then ask your staff about being afraid of the these tough times.

Do you have business challenges? Great time to have a tactical business meeting is right after ‘giving’. Why, everyone’s perspective is different, typically with a more energetic and innovative approach to business challenges. It would be an oversight for me not to suggest assistance

Humorous Note: A cost saving ploy that didn’t work – I have purchased the high dollar stuff for ‘Black Jack’ and for ‘Lucky’ before him, for years @ $2.00+ per pound. In order to conserve, I purchased the economy version the other day. He won’t eat it. I told him, “You’re a barn cat. You kill and eat undesirable critters, what palate sophistication could you possibly have?” I don’t have the words to describe the look I received. I promised him to buy the good stuff. I will be eating the store brands.

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