The concept of paying it forward means that rather than repaying the debt to a person you support someone else by giving them what you were given. For example if someone helped you though a tough time in your life. You pay back that favor by helping someone else. The debt in this case doesn’t necessarily mean a financial debt. The debt could be any type of support.
The concept of paying it forward was popularized in the movie Pay It Forward, but the origin was originally a Greek Comedy. The concept was popular among influential Americans such as Ben Franklin and Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Think about how the concept of paying it forward applies to college students. Some applications are immediate. Others will take longer to pay it forward.
- When someone offers you valuable advice, share that advice with another person.
- When someone helps you understand a concept from a class, teach someone else that concept.
- When someone helps you through a personal issue, help someone else with his/her personal issue when you feel ready.
- When you are mentored by someone, become a mentor for another when you become more experienced.
- Should you receive financial support from others to get through college, think about providing equivalent financial support to a student should you become secure financially later in life.
Those who believe in the concept of paying it forward experience a sense of sustainable giving that can be more rewarding than just simply the sharing of gifts. The best thing you can do to build and sustain your network is to practice paying it forward..