So, last week, I shared these thoughts, but I’ve been thinking some more!

What does investing look like?
  • Giving back – 

Do you have a place to serve?  I mean get your heart and the space under
your fingernails dirty?  It might physically
be digging in a garden or it might be wiping down the sticky slimy tables of a
shelter.  Are you in a place to be
vulnerable and have your heart churned? 
Do you have someone specifically that you invest in?  Is it a young woman who is learning to
practice your trade or didn’t have a mama who taught her how to dress for
work?  What about an elementary student
who needs a strong role model in their life to teach them personal value and
right from wrong?  What about an
organization that needs your passion or expertise…the pro bono way?    

  •  Giving beyond – 

I don’t necessarily have to have “means”,
but what I do have, I can give.  Think
about it.  Can you pay for the coffee of
the person in line behind you?  And,
through that, can you share the idea of looking beyond yourself?  Can you stop and hold the door for the person
behind you and smile as they pass and wonder why? Can you hold back and let the
person who so desperately needs to get somewhere before you merge into your lane
even if it seems like an inconvenience? What if.  What if you saved the money you would spend on
sweet tea in the Chick-fil-A line or at Sonic’s Happy Hour for just one week
and gave that to someone who the 8 dollars would mean one more meal.  I think about the things I don’t think twice
about spending money on.  $3 here.  $5 there. 
And I wonder, do I have a “neighbor” who $8 would relieve stress?

o  
One of my favorite organizations to give money
to each year is the Arkansas
Food Bank
.  For every $1 that you
give them, they can provide 4 meals.  So,
the $8 above could provide 32 meals – that’s more than 3 meals a day for 1 week
for 1 person.
o  
Another organization that I like to invest in is
World
Vision
.  Their gift catalog is
something that I keep on my home office desk all year long.  They have lots of options and as someone who
likes to give creative gifts, I love that it allows me to be creative, meet
needs and honor friends.  I mean where
else can you feed in the US and oversees? 
Where else can you “buy” a beehive, peanut butter or a duck?  Think of all the possibilities for loving
your loves.
  •              Learning more – 

I’m a lifetime learner.  My boss so much as walked to my door on my
second day of 4 hour webinars last week and reminded me.  It’s true. 
It’s genetic.  So, I come by it
honestly.  But, it’s ok.  I think it makes me better.  I like to read those silly articles that people
tag and share on Facebook.  I follow
@OMGFacts on twitter.  I’m terrible at
Trivial Pursuit, but I have lots of knowledge of lots of things.  Whether it’s my liberal arts college
education or my sheer curiosity about life, I love to know about all kinds of
things.  I hate to miss out on “necessary”
experiences of life.  I think knowing
makes you a better person. ·       

  •  Being vulnerable –

I’m brewing on a topic I’ll
come back to, but perfection is boring. 
Vulnerable is SEXY!  Vulnerable
makes you (more) capable.  It makes you
dream.  It broadens your horizons.  It expands your capacity to intake and it
extends your spheres of influence.  In a
world that is driven by insights, likes, shares, and pokes (please tell me
those are gone now!), we want to look and see if our Klout score or our
audience numbers reflect an increase. 
Instead, what if we took a break and quit judging our quality on those
things and instead marked movement by availability, consistency and
initiation.  In those moments, we find
the growth, the nurturing, the explainable.

Can you have a mid-year “one word”.  If so, I’m leading out with “investing”.  If not, then I’ll be on my own little island and ponder, but I want and umbrella in my drink!