Giving at The Core – Part of Our Human DNA
Whilst Amitié Lane is a business that provides gifts for girls, ‘giving’ as a whole concept is a really important component of our business. I’m really passionate about the idea of giving but really, what giving means.
It is a very innate thing that we as humans want to do… Gift giving has long been a favorite subject for studies on human behavior, with psychologists, anthropologists, economists and marketers all weighing in. They have found that giving gifts is a surprisingly complex and important part of human interaction, helping to define relationships and strengthen bonds with family and friends.
In a recent interview with Paul Dunn, Chairman of B1G1, I asked his thoughts on this topic… Below is his response:
“Yeah, there’s all sorts of studies which would suggest that it’s in our DNA, that we really need to be giving. But what I know is that it’s, and I hope this comes across the right way, that it’s really self-serving to give. Let me give you a simple example; here in Singapore outside my condo, there’s a bus stop. It’s just amazing to be here in Singapore as you know, public transport is unbelievable. When I get on the bus in the morning, I say to the bus driver, “Hey, thanks for stopping,” Just that. That simple little thing.
Not surprisingly, people look at me and go, “Whoa, what was that?” And then when I get off the bus, I just wave in the mirror and say, “Hey, thanks.”
What’s so interesting is, I feel better doing it. It’s almost better than getting on a bus. The bus driver is like, “Oh, wow, that’s really cool.” So we all feel better when we give and that, I think, is the underpinning thing.
Let’s ramp that up a little bit and recognize that those of us who can get up in the morning and have a hot shower and a cup of coffee or whatever, there are people in the world who can’t do that, who can’t go to school, all of those sorts of things. So I think that we have a deep obligation to give in that sense as well, provided we’re very careful about how we do it.
There’s a bigger concept there – we are all one – what I do to you, I do to me. So being able to put giving at the core of what you do is really important.”
The thing I love about what Paul is saying here is that we often think of giving in terms of money and one’s ability to give a certain amount.
But the act of giving means so much more. It means time, attention, compassion, presence, wisdom and a multitude of other things. But even more important is the concept that because giving to others directly affects how we feel, it makes the act even more significant.
Find out more
Amitié Lane gives to girls all around the world, as part of the global giving initiative B1G1. To find out more about our giving project, click here.