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  • Writer's pictureEilish Jamieson

Do you pay it forward?

The words get thrown around, but have you experienced and practiced it yourself?

The first time I heard the phrase, my manager was giving me a shed load of extra work, which was likely to take up my weekend. I was a 21 year old graduate and the phrase was completely lost on me. I think it was lost on him too, since the only person that appeared to benefit from me working the weekend was him!

I heard it again nearly 20 years later when my boss tried to persuade me to stay in my banking career by offering me a generous solution to what she thought was the challenge. She was actually pretty close to paying it forward, but perhaps one little question might have hit the goal.

"What can I do to help?"

Since starting my own business I have been humbled by the willingness of others to support my work. From ex-colleagues, fellow business owners, and clients. I am grateful for the many who have paid if forward to me.

I try to apply this in my work too, and really believe there is a completely different energy created when you connect your success with other peoples success. I happen to think that in doing so, you attract the same type of person into your network too.

After the first two spots in my group programs get booked, I open up two bursary spots. This week I filled them with two women who were perfect for the group but currently out of work.

For every corporate client I work with, I put aside the same hours for pro-bono and mentoring work.

It doesn’t have to be your time. An introduction, a recommendation, can make a mountain of difference to someone else.

Psychologically there is a good reason for it too.

Alongside the well known limiting beliefs that often hold us back, there is also a lesser known barrier called the "upper limit", coined by Gay Hendricks in his book 'The Big Leap'.

What happens with your "upper limit" is that you literally have a tolerance cap for how much happiness you will allow yourself. It backs up the idea that often, what we are seeking out in life is not happiness, but comfort. Even when we do achieve something extraordinary, we aren't going to be able to process the gratitude we feel if we are not used to feeling that well for such a long period of time.

A practice of giving for receiving can be a really effective way to accept and appreciate the happiness and success that you experience.

Love to know how do you pay it forward?

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