Are you one of those people that feels really uncomfortable when a friend pays for your meal?
Do you feel a sense of embarrassment when you are given a generous gift?
Do you squirm and feel uneasy when you’ve been given a glowing compliment?
Maybe you would much rather be the one that is giving, then you could avoid any of these unpleasant sensations?
It’s that special time of year when we do a lot of giving. For some people, they just LOVE giving. There are people like my parents, who most of their lives have given SO much to their family, the local church, the school and the community as a whole. It’s almost endless how much they give. This is a wonderful quality, however it can come with a downside also. Firstly, we can give too much, which sounds crazy, but giving too much can make others feel uncomfortable. Then there is giving and not being able to receive, which leads to an imbalance and state of depletion.
We are being saturated on social media by the likes of Gary Vee as to why it’s so important that we give, give and give more. ‘Be of service’ is the latest mantra being flogged to us time and time again. Which is all great, and yes it’s something that the world needs more of after we’d had a very ‘ME’ oriented society for so long. However when it is done without balance and awareness, it leaves us flat stoney broke, depressed, low in energy and a lot of recipients of our giving overwhelmed.
Giving and receiving is an art form that requires a degree of mindfulness…one that I’m still learning. There needs to be a balance of knowing how much to give, and when to receive. We can give in many ways, like giving praise, the emojis at the end of our text messages, being of service with our time, sharing our money, imparting our knowledge, showering people with our affection and offering gifts. You’d think yes, just give, give, give. But it’s not that simple.
There are times when I have given too much affection, too much of my time, too many compliments or even too much knowledge, and it’s like overfilling a container, it gets messy and uncomfortable. If someone was to hold out a glass and asked you to fill it up, and you just kept pouring over the brim because you have so much to give, things would not only get messy, you’d most likely upset the person who held out their glass! Giving makes us feel good, which is why we do it…but there are a few other factors that need to be taken into account when we do this.
It is not what we are willing to give to people that’s important, it’s what they are capable of receiving. Understanding the recipients need is critical in knowing how much to give. This applies to emojis, affection, knowledge or anything else that we are giving. When we give too much, it leaves the other person feeling awkward, uncomfortable or overwhelmed, which in the end defeats the purpose of giving, right? Who would have thought the simple act of giving would be so complex?
Then there is the art of receiving. If we like to give, and yet we aren’t very good at receiving, then we are doing two things, firstly depleting ourselves of energy, time and money and secondly, we are depriving those people that also like to give the ability to experience that joy also. Receiving isn’t a natural trait for many of us. We can be programmed with a sense of unworthiness or poverty mindset, and receiving compliments, money, love, or affection can be incongruent with our ingrained belief systems which in the end causes us to feel uncomfortable. Learning to receive may require a process of over-ride deep conditioning through meditation and affirmations. What we can do is explore deeply within us and ask ourselves what program are we operating with? Then set about daily to not only shift these old thought patterns bit old feelings also. If you are always feeling poor or stressed about money, then this vibration will continue to manifest through your life and your decisions will be influenced by this inner feeling. So we have to take time out each day and get into this feeling and thinking body and work at shifting it to one of abundance and security, knowing that we will be supported and provided for. The Universe is infinitely abundant. So when someone showers us with any abundance we open our arms with gratitude and say ‘YES’ and THANK YOU’.
Giving and receiving is a delicate process that isn’t black and white, it’s a variable for each person and each situation, like walking a tightrope. Finding that balance is something we have to feel out. Some people hold out a big container and say, yes, fill it up, I’m open to receiving! Whereas others might hold out a tiny thimble and ask for a small morsel, and others might not be holding up anything at all.
How do we get this right every time? We won’t, but being a little more mindful through the process will go along way. It’s a work in progress and a balancing act that evolves over time.
Happy Festive season and may you give and receive joyfully!