What I Learned After 30 Days of Giving

I thought it might be fun to do a take away from what I learned after 30 Days of Giving.  For those who did not follow my exploits on Facebook or Instagram, I gave away books or money to book related causes every day in November.  As for results:

  • I gave away over 100 children’s titles.  Recipients ranged from friends to children in homeless shelters.
  • I gave to 5 different book related charities.  They ranged from ones that serve our troops to a group that gets books in to black barbershops.



So what was my takeaway?

  • It wasn’t as easy as I thought. I really struggled after Day 4.  The immediate high was gone and the reality that I had 26 more days …. 26 more days! hit me.  I realize that I like to give books away when the mood strikes, and here I didn’t have that luxury.  
  • It’s not comfortable to put myself out there.  I was petrified that no one would respond to my first book giveaway and I worried that folks would think this endeavor was kind of dumb.  I did get a lot of amazing feedback, but that can’t be the motivator.  In life you have to feel uncomfortable sometimes and just move past it or nothing moves forward.
  • There is a real benefit to feeling more connected with your community.  I reached out to neighbors I barely knew and now I feel I have a closer bond with the folks that live around me.  I was able to share my passion with friends and that just strengthens my bond with them.  Being engaged with others about something you love it a very good thing.
  • You really do get moments when you feel it is all worth it. In this case it was my new neighbors down the street.  They have two girls and I wasn’t quite sure of their ages or interests, so I picked two books at random and hoped I was close.  They came over to thank me and the youngest one just looked up at me with her book clutched in her hands and said “How did you know?”  Man, that one just slayed me.


Will I do it again next year?

  • Well, yes, but perhaps a modified version.  I think a week of giving may be better.  I want a time frame were I can really plan the days out and make a difference but also when I am not grasping at straws some days to figure out how to get these books out there.
  • I also think that I will make more of an effort to give books away on a regular basis.  I get so many and through this exercise I have found a wealth of places that can really use these books.