Today is a good day to get a lot of writing in as I was up and cracking early and have already done my errands for the day. My fiance calls it Adulting. I am not good at Adulting I will admit that, I am good at keeping myself occupied while partaking in a habit I am fond of. I call it enjoying myself others simply call it scratching your balls.
Now that I have walked for 75 minutes and ran for 45 minutes it is time to rest the legs and do some writing. I will double dip today but the first topic is about giving at your AA meeting. How much should one give at a meeting? Of course it’s completely optional but as our 7th tradition states we are full self supporting denying outside contributions so we can’t rely on a special grant from the city or some charity to keep us afloat. The first response a lot of people will give would be that they recommend a dollar but to be honest how long has the abitrary number been a dollar? What about inflation? How about give whatever the cost of a coffee is at your local donut shop?
I personally don’t go by a specific number to determine how much I contribute. I will fluctuate day in and day in. There are some times where I will consistently put in day after day various amount and sometimes I will put a 5 in every third day. Ideally for me that number is about right, but I like I don’t keep track and I’m not rigorous about that.
Ideally the whole point of the matter is that we should want to be good contributing members to our society. AA is most definitely my society. I try to hit about 6 meetings a week and usually hang around and talk for 20-30minutes afterwards. I want to help and do my part. Everyone’s money situation is different so obviously so there is no set answer that works for everybody. If you’re broke because you make minimum wage and after paying bills and eating you have very little left then maybe it’s not best to give to the 7th tradition. What I did was this: I don’t make a lot of money,never have, but I used to make sure I had enough to go to the donut shop daily and buy a cup of coffee buy a newspaper and get a donut. Well one day that I thought it would be best if I made some sacrifices for my fellowship. I stopped going to the donut shop. If I still went daily it would now cost me about $4.25 a day to do but because I believe in trying to help out and give back I have extra money in money in my pocket and a good part of that goes back to the fellowship so everybody wins.
So here is the best answer I can come up with as far as how much to give. The amount of money you put in the basket should represent some sort of sacrifice to you. The sacrifice is because you are appreciative of what AA has done for and you believe in the principle of being a productive member of whatever society you are in. We have to learn to be less selfish because the more selfish you are the more you are likely to get wrapped up in your own life and the more likely you will get entangled in some difficult situation and the desparation leads to destructive behaviors. So the next time anybody asks you to donate to a worthwhile cause do not say “No, thanks, I gave at the office.”