[Weekends are for non-magic posts.]
This is a subject I've written about before, but it's going to take on a new importance in regards to this site very soon. (Foreshadowing!)
Here is what I wrote about it a year ago.
I will tell you what I do. I put an item in my budget (I don't really have a budget, I just do this mentally) for $30 a month. Then I decide what my 3 favorite sites/performers/podcasts are and donate $10 a month to them. Of course, I support other content providers as well by buying the things they release or whatever, but this is what I do for the three entities that provide me the most joy on a regular basis. I don't just do it for them, I do it for my own peace of mind. Peace of mind in the sense that if the site I'm supporting does eventually shut down, I don't have to wonder if my contribution could have made a difference. (And when we're talking about very small enterprises (not something like NPR), a few donations a month one way or the other could very well be the deciding factor.)
That "line in my budget" is now $50. And as i said, it's not just about supporting those projects. I do it for my benefit. This is the way I think about it. "These things make me happy. The fact that they're free is great. But if I'm not supporting the things that make me happy, what the hell am I doing? Why am I hoping to just skate by and hoping these things stick around?" I watched too many blogs, podcasts, youtube channels, and things like that fall off the face of the earth because people weren't backing them. Now at least I can say I've done my part.
You may think I'm setting you up with this post, and I am, in a sense, because Season 2 of the Jerx will happen only if people are on board to support it. But that's not my point in writing it. I'm completely content either way regardless of what happens with this site. I'm writing this because I think it's a genuine tip that has made my life better.
You get more enjoyment out of the things you like when you support them. It makes you feel more enmeshed in the good things in your life.
I've come to realize that not supporting these things is the ultimate form of low-self esteem. There's something that gives me a couple hours of pleasure a month and I'm going to mull over the idea of giving them a few dollars a month? Fuck that noise. I value my happiness too much to be cheap about it. So should you.