How Generous Are You?

Highlights from our reader survey on generosity.

maltiase/Adobe Stock

Is generosity overrated?

• 3% YES
• 97% NO

survey graphic: minority of Mindful audience says generosity is overrated

Compared to others, how generous are you?

52% Say they’re average, while 45% consider themselves more generous than others and just 4% report being less generous than others. We’re not mathematicians here at Mindful, but something about this doesn’t quite add up.

What time of year are you most likely to be generous?

88% Try to give throughout the year, while 8% tend to be more giving around the holidays, and less than 1% are most generous around tax season.

Honorable mentions:

• “On my birthday.”

• “Not often enough.”

Who is it most difficult to be generous with?

• “My mother-in-law.”

• “Colleagues who blame children for their problems.”

• “My psychologist.”

• “People who don’t like me.”

• “Telemarketers.”

• “The NRA.”

• “Myself!!!!”

If you won the lottery, how would  it affect your level of generosity?

67% Say it would make them more generous, 23% say it wouldn’t affect how generous they are, and 10% wisely say they won’t know ’til they win.

What kind of organization are you most likely to donate to?

• 16% choose International
• 84% choose Local

84% of mindful readers donate to local organizations

In your opinion, what’s the most important thing to be generous with?

survey: what's most important to be generous with

Who is the most generous person in your life?

• “My mother, hands down.”

• “A 4-year-old girl I babysit for. She always wants to give gifts to me and to her friends.”

• “My husband—despite a physical disability, he gives of his time and skills to anyone who can benefit from his help. It keeps him feeling useful, and brings a smile to the faces of the recipients.”

• “My son and daughter-in-law. As a couple they provide loving care and generosity to so many—family, friends, and causes.”

• “My grandmother. She was always giving of her heart and time. I remember that she gave away many, many fabulous cookies wrapped in foil at local nursing homes. I realized as an adult how lucky I was to deliver cookies with her and share in the joy her visits brought to others.”

• “A friend who recently retired from starting a wolf sanctuary.”

• “My college professor. She donates time and herself.”

• “I am fortunate to be surrounded by many people who are generous with their time, spirit, and heart. They inspire me to find new ways to give.”

• “My pet! Total ability to give, regardless of the time of day or their moods.”

What are the ways you could be more generous in your life?

• “Slowing down and listening more.”

• “I probably have more time and energy than I think I do.”

• “Being patient with those who frustrate the heck out of me.”

• “Being more forgiving.”

The main way people say they can be more generous:

• With their TIME.

illustration wolves

This article originally appeared in the December 2016 issue of Mindful magazine.