I like to volunteer, give back to my community, and donate money and resources to causes that I feel are important. Because I am a tired, broke, overwhelmed, and busy mom I used to struggle with feeling like I just didn’t have enough time, money, or energy to be as giving as I would have liked. And because of that there was a period of about a year after the birth of my daughter where I did no giving back (outside of my tithes at church) and gave up all volunteering. I used my daughter and my role as a new working mom as an excuse for why I “couldn’t” teach Sunday school, volunteer at the local arts festival, or make even my typical modest donation to the workplace charitable fundraising campaign.
What I found was that giving up that philanthropic part of myself – because I had to spend all my time and money and energy on my new family – really did a number on me. I felt like I had lost something. It feels good to do things for other people. It feels good to support missions that are important. And I felt bad that I wasn’t doing any of that any more. Plus, I was missing a valuable opportunity to show my daughter the value of being generous with your time and resources – even when you have little to spare – and the blessings and opportunities that so often result from helping others.
I soon figured out that although I had new demands on my time, money, and energy there was no reason for me to stop giving back and volunteering. I just had to learn to be creative about how I did it. And I had to come to terms with the fact that I wouldn’t be able to volunteer or donate as much as I used to. But every little bit helps and giving what I could when I could made me feel a whole lot better about myself then giving nothing and blaming it on being a mom. So if you too struggle with finding the time, money, and/or energy to give back but you really want to, you can go here to download my quick and dirty Tired, Broke, Busy Mom’s Guide to Giving Back: Tired, Broke, Busy Mom’s Guide to Giving Back.