How To Save A Life or “Send Donuts, Legs & Umbrellas, Please!”

"No One Fights Alone" is the mantra for Brain Cancer warriors. I think it should be a mantra for life.

“No One Fights Alone” is the mantra for Brain Cancer warriors. I think it should be a mantra for life.

Written 5-15-15

I have so much joy in my heart today. I am beyond blessed. I am so grateful for my family and friends, the heroes in my life, the lovers and fighters who I see braving their own battles fiercely each day.

When times get really tough we have to look even harder for joy. Sometimes the best way to create joy when you’re drowning is to throw someone else a rope. A random of act of kindness, a pot of soup for a sick friend, a random doughnut delivery on a rainy day.

Glennon Doyle Melton, author of Carry On, Warrior and founder of Momastery says, “We belong to each other.” More than anything, these last few years of hardship have taught me that. And I know it’s not just me feeling it! Everywhere I look I see strangers and friends all fighting really insane battles right now. Divorces, moves, financial upheavals, breast cancer, brain cancer, special needs children, you name it.

frodo-and-sam_38056_1I think these crisis’ are happening to collectively shift us back into a culture of basic human interdependence. We have to take care of each other!!!! It unites us!!! It empowers both parties – the giver and the receiver! It creates a give and take that threads us all together as netting beneath the trapeze dances we’re dancing. Every single one of us at some point has needed to be reminded we are not fighting alone! Truly, we can’t go it alone, and we SHOULDN’T go it alone.

When we see someone drowning we should fight our way into their homes and hearts to let them know they’re not alone. A few amazing women have worked hard to let me know I wasn’t alone the last couple years and they have taught me how to be a better friend. My friend Corina is a great example. After our daughter Kama was born in November, some of my friends set up a Meal Train for us where one family brings a homemade meal each day for a couple of weeks. Around here, Meal Trains are standard. I love that about my community.

Baby Kama and I 5 days after her birth - Photo by Three Little Foxes Photography

Baby Kama and I five days after her birth – Photo by Three Little Foxes Photography

So, my friend Corina saw our Meal Train pop on Facebook one day, and not even knowing me decided to contribute. She brought a beautiful meal and secretly hoped knocking on my door would lead to a new friendship. She knocked that day, and she kept on knocking for months. She dropped the meal off when I was in bed recovering from hemorrhaging after the birth. Then, she came back to pick up her dish when I was in bed recovering from a week in the hospital with a life-threatening postpartum uterine infection and the whole house had the flu. Then, she came back and brought us chicken soup when we all got yet another round of the flu. 2 days later, she texted me, “Had a little more soup leftover, thought you could have it for lunch today. Mama’s gotta keep her strength up!”

She had no idea I literally felt like death for 7 months straight, that I’d faced a life-threatening illness in the hospital for a week, that I’d had only about 6 days without a cold or flu in the house over the last 7 months, and that I was also suffering from severe postpartum depression and anxiety. She just kept showing up because her heart told her to.

Because of that, we now have a beautiful friendship, which fills both our hearts with joy. She has become one of my greatest friends and teachers. And you’ll never believe it. Once I finally had a chance to open the door and let her in, we realized we had something pretty amazing in common. Remember Dana, from Safeway?

She’s his daughter.

WHO. WOULD. HAVE. THOUGHT?!

We had no idea.

But, I’m not the least bit surprised. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

My BFF Ashley and her son Kayson

My BFF Ashley and her son Kayson

Corina, and people like my BFF Ashley have taught me how to really “show up” for others. Today, Ashley is home with her special needs “hero” and son, Kayson, who just barely recovered from complications after a minor surgery to end up with the flu! The flu can be very scary for a kid with special needs and I know that. I know that being Ashley’s BFF means one day I might be sitting at a hospital bedside holding my lovely Ashley as she huddles over her lifeless son. We try not to think about that, but it’s a job I willingly signed up for because she is a piece of my heaven on Earth and I’d do anything for her. She’s saved my life again and again by showing up for me when I needed to know I was not alone.

IMG_1825So today, I didn’t care what was going on in my world, when I heard “flu” I just put on my boots and my “messy bun” do and ran right over there to just show up because I know how it feels when one thing after another after another goes wrong, and your faith is wavering, and you just need someone to look you in the eye and say, “Hey, I know this sucks. I’m here. We’ll get through it together. You’re NOT in this alone.” I brought her a donut and another friend sent chocolates and I stood in the rain outside her door and I told Ashley she could have my arm or my leg if she needed it. She said, thanks for the donut, and I won’t be needing a leg today, but I’ll call you later if I need a margarita or a bag of sand to put my head in.

THIS is how we throw each other ropes. This is how we get through all the hard and wonderful things of life. TOGETHER.

Corina, my BFF Ashley, and a few other amazing loves in my life have fought hard to let me know I’m not alone. They have taught me how to be a better friend, how to show up for others even when it’s hard, how to be relentless in the persistence of SHOWING UP WITH A BASKET OF LOVE AT OTHERS’ DOORSTEPS. Sometimes, when you’re drowning, you don’t even have time to come up for air to figure out what you need or how to get it. It’s those times, you need someone to just show up and bring donuts, or toilet paper, or pizza or soup or kleenex!!!!! More and more, even when we are busy and tired and overwhelmed and sad and hopeless ourselves, we need to “suit up and show up” for every stranger and friend we see drowning, transitioning or fighting their own battle. If nothing else, to hand them an umbrella and stand together beneath it ’til the storms pass.

Get your boots on and your donuts out, and just show up at a doorstep today and see what happens. Or, just open your door and let the person knocking…in. That’s how you save a life…one knock, one heart at a time. ❤

Are You Giving Your Gifts Away?

1382924_61805838Picture yourself standing in front of me holding the most magnificent gift you have ever seen. It is wrapped with pristine perfection, exquisite and ornate bountiful bows enveloping it. You can feel the glow of it’s contents emanating outwards, and the anticipation of seeing me open this wondrous gift has you giddy like a 5-year-old on Christmas morning.

Your natural, inherent heart-led instinct is to pop this gift into my lap and relish in every single second of the joy of watching me open it.

But, then, just as you are about to hand it to me, mere nanoseconds before your gift greets my fingertips, as you look into my eyes of anticipation, you feel a different feeling overtake you.

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The Reviews Are In! Mindful Mamas “Life-Changing!”


DSC_0005Last Summer, a little seed of a dream was planted in me, to take what I have learned through 4 years of soul-searching & abundant growth in the midst of supreme tragedy, & turn it into something I could use to benefit others. My greatest heart’s desire I’ve been slowly hatching is to teach & speak, sharing the wisdom I have uncovered through 20 deaths, 4 moves, the loss of my home, job, car, baby & so much more.

I’m sure you can imagine how hard it was to choose to open up and unfold after 4 years of relentless tragedy. But, this famous quote by Anais Nin became my hope & my goal, for myself and others:

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That Scares the BLEEP Out of Me!

Fear or faith, fear or faith, fear or faith?

A new unintentional mantra for me of late?

I keep hearing it over and over in my head, like the soundtrack of Oz’s munchkins replaying: Which one will you choose, Megan? Fear or faith? Fear or faith?

I’m used to choosing fear. That’s the old pattern.

But, over the last few years, I’ve been pushing myself to choose faith more often.

I’m doing that again right now.

I am getting ready to be courageous and take a risk on many new fronts and that SCARES THE BLEEP OUTTA ME. (I was going to say it scares the hell outta me, but that just doesn’t seem right…maybe saying it scares the Heaven outta me, or the Heaven on Earth outta me would be better…but those ones just don’t have the same ring to ’em.)

But, I’m kind of enjoying that it scares the bleep out of me because, well, this is something new, being scared by my own sacred force at pushing myself OUT of my boxes.

Yesterday, a dear friend said to me, “It seems to me that maybe fear is simply a natural part of the process for all of us when we’re pushing ourselves out of the box.”

That was a little ah-ha moment for me. I thought maybe the fear was my intuition screaming, “RED ALERT! RED ALERT! YOU ARE NOT READY FOR THIS, MEGAN!”

Instead, I think that fear is an indicator that I am releasing my old patterns of staying in the fear, and doing the thing I’m being pulled toward anyway.

I think I fear new things because they have the potential to be so great. Just as Marianne Williamson says, “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.”

So, my new motto of late: Do something that scares you every day.

It’s actually a pretty refreshing way to live. I’m done waiting for everything to be “perfect” before I follow through on my dreams, intuitions and ambitions. If I waited for everything to be “perfect,” I’d be waiting ’til I’m dead.

I’m choosing faith over fear, although it’s a lot of work! All I can do is prepare as best I can for each thing I face, then step forward in faith as I follow the voice within.

There’s a chance I may “fail” in the eyes of the world, but wait, wait, wait, wait! How could I possibly be standing here right now without ALL my “failures”? How can we learn if we don’t make mistakes?

There’s another funny thing I’m noticing as I attempt to re-train my old habits of fear, and that is that I love to sabotage myself. I’d much rather check Facebook and emails then continue full steam ahead through the hard steps of pulling off my next greatest dream. I’ve hit the point where I am the most challenged, the most pushed past my comfort level, questioning and doubting, “Am I doing the right thing, the right way?!” I’m in the last final push to the finish line, and that monster side of me who is so used to expecting the worst of life is saying, “Just give up, give up, Megan. It’s so much easier. Just go check your email, write a beautiful blog post (HA!) or something…it’s so much easier then taking the risk that you MIGHT FAIL.”

But, today, in my morning reading, I read something that reminded me that as long as I am conscious of my fear, I can simply look at it and say, “Oh yes, ha ha, I see you there trying to sabotage me, aren’t you CUTE?! Ok, I’m going to do this anyway now.” I try to be willing to look at my fear so I can dissect it and distinguish, is this fear here because I’m about to make a mistake, or is it here because it’s simply par for the course as I’m pushing myself to new limits, doing things a different way, taking steps out of FAITH instead of FEAR?

The words that spoke to this today were on the very last page of a book that has profoundly changed my life in terms of abundance and prosperity, Open Your Mind to Receive by Catherine Ponder.
These are the last words she leaves us with (and I capitalized them because she did, by the way. I promise I’m not screaming at you!):

I CAME INTO THIS LIFE EQUIPPED TO MEET EVERY DEMAND THE WORLD MAKES UPON ME. BUT I MUST BE WILLING TO COOPERATE WITH LIFE, SO LIFE CAN COOPERATE WITH ME.
I DECLARE EVERY SITUATION IN MY LIFE A SUCCESS. I HAVE NEVER FAILED IN ANY EXPERIENCE, BECAUSE I LEARNED FROM IT.
ALWAYS THERE IS ROOM FOR AGREEMENT, I GRANT ITS PRESENCE BY AGREEING WITH THE GOOD. THEN I WITHDRAW IN PEACE.

That line, that every situation in my life is a success? Wow, does that speak to a girl who has lost just about everything the last few years! It would be so easy to consider myself a failure for the effects the recession has had on our family, for the attempts at new dreams that have started then stopped or changed, for the feeling I often have of trying to dig my way out of a deep hole with a teaspoon.

But, I try not to be end-oriented, outcome-focused, or goal-attached. I can see now, that every piece of all these experiences have been successes for what I’ve learned from them.

I choose to apply that moving forward. I choose to make the risk of failure an acceptable risk because…even failure can be successful.

I choose to live in JOY daily. The simplest way to live in joy daily? Give JOY to yourself, and others. Sharing my lessons here with you, brings me joy, and maybe brings you a little joy, too. Sounds like a whole lotta joy goin’ around here, folks, doesn’t it?

Take a cue from what I’m trying to do. Take risks. Follow your dreams, even if the road paved to them is out of view right now. Stepping stones will appear before you on the path as soon as you start in that direction. Find one small thing you can do that takes you towards the greatest vision you have for yourself, and do it. Even if it scares you. Then, watch what happens. And if it scares you every day, doggedly pursuing those dreams, scary baby step by scary baby step…great! That means, you’re probably doing something right!

SO, what have you done that scares the bleep outta ya lately????!!!!! =) I dare you respond with something absolutely wonderfully TERRIFYING!

Grim Reaper Girl – Pt 3 “Death Has Made Me More Alive”

I woke up yesterday morning scared to death of what I had done. I hardly slept the whole night before.

It was so scary to tell you how I really feel, what I’ve really been through. I was afraid you’d think of me as a failure, because at times I haven’t been able to figure out how to pick myself up again. I was afraid you’d think, “What she’s going through doesn’t begin to compare to what I’ve been through.” Or, maybe you’d think I’m just a whiny little self-absorbed brat.

But instead, you called me…brave. Wow.

I cried shirtsleeves of tears over your comments and posts. You being here, you showing up for this…it’s giving purpose to the pain.

So, I am insisting upon myself that I continue to be brave. I didn’t go through all this stuff for nothing. I drew all these experiences to myself to learn something…and then share it.

So, take what you can. I’m just here to try and give to you what it’s taken me 499 losses of every freaking painful sort to figure out.

I have so much more to say…such mind-blowing, life-changing, eye-opening, profound experiences that have brought me to the altar of my soul…and it was there that I found the greatest awakenings in the deepest pain, the purest joy in the deepest cuts of sorrow.

I’m so glad you’re here, and can’t wait to share more.

So now, for chapter three of Grim Reaper Girl.
This is it right here…are you ready?
_______________________

EXPECT BLISS

A couple weeks ago, I met a man after service at our local Unity Church on New Year’s Day. The morning had been a powerful “releasing of the old” and “bringing in of the new.” It was on this day that I decided to GIVE UP MY GRIM REAPER GIRL STATUS and start using my voice to echo the strength and beauty I’ve found in my experiences. No longer a victim of life…a creator of it instead.

I remember Michael Mirdad, the speaker, saying, “What’s going to happen now that you’re not hiding behind your pain anymore?” And I thought, “Oh, wow…what IS going to happen?!”

I had shared in the service, a little of my story, so afterwards, this man came up to me and said he, too, had witnessed many deaths in his lifetime, and he understood how hard it was. We talked for awhile and then out of the blue he said something I’ll never forget. He said, “But I just get up every morning and I try really hard to BLISSFUL.”

Wow, you try really hard to be…BLISSFUL?!” I thought! I get up every morning and think, “How am I going to survive another train wreck?!”

I was so taken back…by his almost “expectation” that life could hand him pure bliss every day.

That was an ah-ha moment for me.

Remember what I said in the first post? That it was at my lowest point that I decided I didn’t want to live a life of loss anymore?

Well, I don’t. I DO NOT LIVE A LIFE OF LOSS ANYMORE.

Bad things still happen. People still die. But I’m not living a life of loss.

I see the joy and beauty around the pain. I’ve learned the path to peace. I’ve learned to accept this moment as it is, and to treasure it.

Borrowed from Oprah

Mark Nepo, author of “The Book of Awakening” (a book Oprah thinks every human being on the planet should own) shared a story on Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday that changed me.

He said one morning he stepped outside and was just beholding the beauty of a gorgeous, sunny day, taking in all the opportunity that brand new day held for him, soakin’ it all up when BAM. He stubbed his toe on a rock. So bad he thought he broke it.

The pain overtook him. All he could think about was the toe, the pain.

And then, he had his own ah-ha moment. He looked up, looked around, and remembered the beauty of the day around him.

And he thought, “Is everything the pain in my toe? Or is the pain in my toe, within the miracle of the sun and the day and everything else?”

When I heard this, I decided…I am not my stubbed toes. There is beauty around the pain. I choose to see that.

Neale Donald Walsch put it best in his book, “Communion With God.”

“Your life lived is…a reflection of your deepest understandings.

If your life is an experience of constant joy and total bliss, then you truly have it. This does not mean that your life is without the conditions that can cause pain, suffering, and disappointment. It does mean that you live in joy despite those conditions. Your experience has nothing to do with conditions.

This is unconditional love, of which I have spoken many times…When you have unconditional love of Life, then you love Life just the way it is showing up, right here, right now.”

Yup, that’s me. That’s what I’m talking about. That’s what I strive for every day! That’s my little saying, “Finding peace in the middle of my own hurricanes!” I am not my stuff. I am not my circumstances. My joy comes from within, from knowing what a beautiful soul I am, what a beautiful life I am given each day.

I have asked myself repeatedly, why did I draw these experiences of so much DEATH into my life? I have known in my heart that it was, in fact, to experience more life. I’ve tried to figure out how to put this into words and here it is, so beautifully…

“…every moment is a dying. Every moment is the end of your life as what you were, and the beginning of your life as what you now choose to become. In each moment you are recreating yourself anew…

The way to produce more life is to experience more death. Don’t let death be a once-in-a-lifetime thing! Experience each moment of your life as a death, for that is, in truth, what it is when you re-define death as simply the end of one experience and the beginning of another.

When you do this, you can have a little funeral each moment for what has just passed, for what just died. And then you can turn around and create the future, realizing that there is a future, that there is more Life.

When you know this, the idea of “not enough” is shattered, and you can begin to use each golden Moment of Now in a new way, with new understanding and deeper appreciation, with larger awareness and greater consciousness.”

Yup, that’s been my gift. I use each Moment of Now in a new way. I have grown that deeper appreciation and awareness, in spades. I know, “This too shall pass.” I know that everything is always changing, that people come and go in my life. So, I try really hard not to suffer through letting people/things/stuff go – instead, to look at the space which is created when they do go – and remember that now, it can be filled with something new.

This means that every day, I look at my children with full awareness that their time may come tomorrow. I’ve watched two small children in my life die unexpectedly, and I lost a baby before my son was born. I know deeply, that every second with my two precious blessings is a gift.

But I don’t use that to live in fear. Instead, I simply try not to waste any of my moments with them. Does that mean I’m Supermom? No, it just means, I soak up every moment, big or small. Tonight we went to Wal-Mart and made a party out of our daughter spending a $15 gift card from Christmas – it’s the simple things, I tell ya, the simple things.

I try not to miss a birthday party or a dinner invitation because ten times now, that birthday party has been the last memory I made with a loved one – the memory I cherish now more then any other. And the one time I didn’t go to a birthday party…was the last time I could’ve held my nephew alive.

I reach out and connect with as many people as I can each day (even though being a hermit would be SO much easier and simpler!) because that’s what life is about! Because when I die, I want a funeral full of people saying I made them feel like they mattered in this world.

I give away as much as I possibly can because I know what it’s like to feel like you have nothing. And because creating a constant flow of energy back and forth, and around, between all of us – that is life! If we stop giving, we stop the flow of life itself!

I’ve found the most incredible faith possible…I mean, it is unbelievable how I trust the Universe to provide for me now because I have been at my breaking point again and again, and every time, found exactly what I needed to get through.

I don't know for sure...but I've always been told these orbs that show up in photos are our angels. I opened this photo to insert it here & suddenly noticed...10 orbs around me. This was taken on my birthday 2 weeks ago.

I wake up every day feeling BLISSFUL, people – heck ya, I said it and I mean it – I can’t believe it’s true but I wake up every day feeling BLISSFUL!!!!! Because I have a new day before me to create anything I want.

I’m not in survival mode anymore. I’m in full-throttle THRIVE mode.

I still struggle, I still need constant daily reminders of all this…but I have that now, with 12 new angels around me – they are my constant reminder.

Yes, death has been my gift…because it has made me more…

ALIVE.

And when I die, you better believe, I’m gonna die…a BLISSFUL woman.

This Year I Gave Time for Christmas


“Guest Perspective” Published in the Sedona Red Rock News 1-11-12

This year, I knew we weren’t going to have a spend-crazy Christmas. My husband and I worked out a modest budget, and decided it was best spent on making the holiday memorable for our kids which meant no gifts for the other forty-two family members.

At first I felt sorry for myself. But, after I tore up the letter I started to the President, demanding he abolish Christmas because it’s just a bunch of meaningless hype, I stopped and asked myself a question.

What does Christmas mean to me?

I forced myself to think back through all the Christmas’ I have celebrated to see if I could even remember any of the gifts I received.

I remembered the tie-died t-shirt dress my Dad gave me when I was seven because it was the first gift he actually picked out for me himself, without my Mom’s help. I remembered the iPOD my husband gave me one year, and the diamond necklace – but not because they were expensive, because he put thought into picking them.

I really couldn’t remember too many kitchen gadgets, knick knacks, CDs, stereos or scarves.

Just like Scrooge, my reflection on ghosts of Christmas’ past gave me an epiphany. An old saying I once heard put it best, “The greatest things in life are the people we love, the places we see, and the memories we make.”

For me, drinking Scandinavian wassail with my grandparents, making gingerbread houses with my nieces, or bundling up for a stroll through Red Rock Fantasy all together, are the things I remember best about Christmas.

So, I decided to give a different sort of gift this year. 

The most priceless gift of all. 

Time.

After twelve deaths in our family in three years, I’ve learned the value of such a simple thing as time with my loved ones.

So, I thought carefully about a memory I would like to create with each person and I offered that idea in a small card I gave each one.

My great-Aunt, Dollie, choked back tears when she read that I wanted to spend an afternoon with her sharing our memoirs. I was surprised. It sounded like such a simple thing to give her, but it was the only gift that made her cry. (I have a feeling the super-scrubbing “As Seen on TV” car-washing brush I would’ve gotten her, probably wouldn’t have had the same impact).

When my Mom read her card, she started to cry, too, when I told her how much we appreciate all she does for our family. She said, “Not a lot of people tell me how much they appreciate me. That was the greatest gift you could give me.”

This was the most simple and humble Christmas I’ve ever celebrated, but the gift of time proved to be the best gift I’ve ever given, or received. I had a houseful of people, a huge feast of food (Christmas potluck!), a storm on the stockings by a bunch of happy kiddos Christmas morning, and time with my family that I could never put a price tag on.

Why Can’t We Accept Help?

Life’s greatest question is, “Why are we here?” 

I believe the answer is, “For each other.”

~ Megan Aronson

So, why is it, then, that we haveImage so much trouble accepting help from each other?

My trips to the grocery store used to be all about what I could get, how I could use coupons to get freebies and cheapies, and stretch my dollar further for my family of four. (On average, I save 40% on my grocery bills thanks to my girl Juli over at Bargain Believer).

Then, twice this week, I heard two prominent leaders speak to the true meaning of abundance. Michael Mirdad, a well-known spiritual author, speaker and healer said, “You can’t hold onto anything you have. You have to give it away. The moment you try to hold onto it is the moment you create suffering.” 

In my “poor me” mentality I would have laughed at him – hey buddy, you have no idea what I’m going through, I’m clipping coupons just to save a buck or two at the market!

But, now I’m realizing he’s right. It is our struggle as a society to try to hold onto things that creates so much suffering for us. Think about how much easier your life could be if you had no ideas around what type of car you should drive, home you should live in, clothes you should wear…to appear “successful” to yourself, or others.

I’ve learned this first hand, moving through four homes in the last three years, different cities, and even facing the loss of several loved ones. Trying to hold onto things, people, places – anything for that matter – is what creates my suffering. Giving it all away allows me the freedom of embracing everything with open arms, instead of trying to grasp it like sand slipping through my fingers.

Tom Shadyac also shared a profound demonstration of abundance on this week’s Super Soul Sunday on OWN (Oprah’s network). Shadyac is known as the Director of blockbuster films Ace Ventura, The Nutty Professor and Bruce Almighty. When he made his first fortune, he bought a 17,000 square foot home in Beverly Hills. He moved in and realized that everything society had taught him to value did not in fact create happiness for him. So, he sold his house and moved into a mobile home where he began creating his thought-provoking documentary, “I Am”.

On an episode of Oprah he said, “I never felt right holding onto that much money. I always felt like I should give it away quick.” He spoke with hand gestures mimicking a child playing hot potato, like he could not hold onto that hot money for long, or it would burn him.

So, I went out for my weekly shopping trip this time, and held my coupons loosely even though they feel like my lifeline to abundance right now.

Without intending to, my new-found abundance attitude had me unexpectedly passing my little grail out to strangers. Cruising through the stores, I was like a coupon cart-shopping stalker! I was eyeing other people’s carts looking for items I might have a coupon for and they were eyeing me like a pedophile at the playground when I exclaimed, “Would you like a coupon for that?!” (And, I’m not the first to think of this, a lovely organization out of Mesa, Coupon2Give, shops with coupons then donates their purchases to charities in need.)

I was amazed at how much people DIDN’T want help.

But I remember being there, caught up in my “I must be a self-sufficient island” mentality, or too afraid to accept the kindness of strangers.

Why shouldn’t we help each other?! 

The food we eat wouldn’t be available at the grocery store if there weren’t someone planting it and harvesting it.

The homes we live in would not exist if ten men had not worked together to build them.

So, why shouldn’t we freely give and receive, always, even at the grocery store, the gas station, the restaurant?

Our world is starting to shift from the Age of Consumerism to the Age of Cooperation. Santa’s “Layaway” elves paying off layaway balances before Christmas, “Pay It Forward” menus at restaurants informing guests their bill is already paid, organizations like Meal Train providing meals to families going through a major life transition.

Now, we need to continue to evolve. It’s time to move past simply reaching out to those in crisis and start giving the little things, too, all the time. Give of yourself, give of your time, give of whatever you have to give, even if it’s just listening to a friend who’s going through a tough time. Give it away, and I promise… you will feel RICH! I do!