Lately, there’s been a trend of more and more people participating in philanthropy. While this trend is great and can do a lot of good for many incredible causes, it’s important to consider whether or not the philanthropy trend is actually sincere. It’s likely that you currently, or plan to eventually, participate in philanthropy in some way. Considering philanthropy as a whole is important, but it’s even more important to examine your own reasons for participating in philanthropy and make sure they’re genuine.

Isn’t it good no matter what?

While some people may argue that giving is beneficial no matter what, that’s not necessarily the case. Insincere philanthropy can be beneficial in the short-term, but it needs to be a lifestyle you adopt. Charity means writing a check and donating to organizations you care about and is also a positive thing, but philanthropy is a larger concept. To really make a difference and be a true philanthropist, you need to work on different characteristics and attributes.

Because philanthropy is a way of life, it means you must genuinely commit to making philanthropy a focus in your life. If you push the image of a philanthropist, but do not actually follow through, or only practice philanthropy for a short amount of time, it can be detrimental to the causes you work with. If you do not honestly pursue a philanthropic lifestyle, you will be giving your time and efforts on a short term basis. It’s important that your reasons for participating in philanthropy are to actually make a difference and you’re willing to invest that time instead of only using it to market your business until you are more successful.

How to make sure your giving is sincere

If you’re concerned over whether or not your giving is sincere, take some time to reflect on what you’re doing and why. If you’re participating in philanthropy because you genuinely want to make a difference in the world for some issue, that’s great! That’s the real reason you should put energy into philanthropy. However, if you’re only acting philanthropic in order to market your business or personal brand or because you think it makes you look good, you should re-evaluate your priorities and think about how you can be more authentic with your philanthropic pursuits.

Start making your giving sincere

There’s a possibility that after considering why you participate in philanthropy, you’ve realized that you’re only being philanthropic in order to achieve some end goal for yourself and not because you actually care about the cause or people connected to the philanthropy. However, this absolutely does not mean that you should stop being philanthropic! It merely indicates that it’s time for you engage in more sincere philanthropy.

Find a cause you’re genuinely passionate about and focus your efforts there. Spend time volunteering and finding ways to help out that cause, even if it doesn’t benefit you or is inconvenient. Make an effort to get to know the people your philanthropy works with and the others who volunteer or work at that philanthropy. With some work, adapting a genuinely philanthropic mindset won’t take too much time!