Why do we wait for the holidays or the end of the tax year to give?

December 13, 2007 at 4:06 pm Leave a comment

You’ve seen them around as you shop for gifts this holiday season, the jolly bell ringers with their little red kettle. Most of the people I see either look away in shame or dig into their pockets for some change. As they drop the coins into the kettles they look up with a smile feeling like they’ve done something great. Of course, they have done something great. But, there’s another side to this story.

Why do we need someone to stand in front of a store, ringing a little bell, to give? For churchgoers, why do we wait for the holiday season to give? For others, why do we wait for the end of tax season to give?

If you ask most people, they feel really good when they’ve given either money or of themselves to a cause. There’s just something fulfilling about it. So, why do we have such a hard time doing it? It’s really not that hard. Just grab a few dollars out of your wallet or write a quick check and you’re done. Not only do you get a tax deduction, but you feel good about it.

The last one is easy. Most people that are looking to give at the end of tax season are simply looking to reduce their overall annual income to reduce taxes. While I have some personal issues with people that do this, I can definitely relate to the reasoning behind it. I mean, who wants to owe money to Uncle Sam while you worked your butt off all year to earn it? Not me.

Regardless of which group you fall in, we can all agree that it’s good to give. It’s good for the soul, it’s good on your income tax return, and, most importantly, it’s good for those that benefit from it. So, why not give all year long? Don’t wait until the end of the year. Put it in your budget. And don’t just stick it at the bottom of your budget, put it at the top.

Dave Ramsey jokes, “someone told me, ‘By the time I get to end of my budget, I don’t have anything left to give.'” He responded, “Honey, that’s ’cause you have your budget upside down.”

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Entry filed under: Budgeting, Giving, Taxes.

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