The joy of generosity

The last few days I’ve been thinking quite a bit of generosity and in particular how being generous can be extremely powerful and beneficial. But there’s a kind of catch-22 involved. You see, if you are generous to others in order to gain some benefit for yourself down the road a ways, that selfish intention has a way of blunting the value of the generosity in the first place.

My good friend Rowell Gormon wonderfully illustrates how things are supposed to work on his blog recently. And as I noted in my comment to his post, it was his own act of generosity toward me that was the catalyst for our friendship several years ago. So many other people have been generous and helpful to me through the 27 years that I’ve been a professional voiceover that I feel obligated to be generous to others. Well, that’s not entirely right. Not obligated as in a burden. Obligated as in how can I not respond with generosity to others?

Of course, talking about how generous I am here on this blog smacks a bit too much of self-elevation. Kind of like that line that I always laugh at when I think about it. “But enough about me, what do you think of me?”

No, the point of this post isn’t to point at myself as some sort of paragon of virtue and generosity. It’s to encourage you to think about ways you can pass along what you know to those who are coming along after or with you. Much of the time, those opportunities will sneak up on you so you have to make up your mind in advance that you’ll grab them when they come your way.

Grab and then immediately release. Which is the point, isn’t it? It’s not the fastest way to build your voiceover business, but it may be the most satisfying.


  1. thanks for being one of my “agents” as well, bob.

    and don’t worry about the self-elevation. that’s what you’ve got friends for. we’ll handle that part.

    Comment by rowell gormon — April 21, 2010 @ 10:35 am

  2. Bob,

    I’m one of the many who’ve gratefully received your generosity. I’ve already had the opportunity to help a couple of other voice over talents by answering some of their start up questions. It was a wonderful feeling to be able to do so.

    Thanks so much for your kindness.


    Comment by Chris Fadala — April 22, 2010 @ 12:16 am

  3. Rowell and Chris,

    Thank you for your kind comments.

    Be well,

    Comment by Bob — April 23, 2010 @ 1:11 am

  4. […] May 3, 2010 by Bob I wrote a few days ago about generosity. Seth Godin did too. I really think you should read his take. It’s very […]

    Pingback by Generosity Seth style » The Voiceover Boblog — May 3, 2010 @ 2:15 pm

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