Giving and Receiving
I grew up Lutheran and from an early age gladly became entrenched in both the sacred and secular aspects of Christmas. I can't speak for other celebrations that involve gift giving, but I think it's pretty unanimous that for most participants, Christmas causes stress.
This year I got clear on the fundamental issue stimulating so many intense emotions for me -- the concept of giving and receiving.
It's hard to avoid all the propaganda around being a loving, giving person, but you rarely hear anything about receiving. In many ways, a lot of people are unaware that they are walking around with their receiver turned off.
I fully recognize that my core mechanism for giving and receiving is in the process of being rehabilitated. I've been consciously working on this aspect of my personal growth for the past five years, and my business Hint Jewelry is one of the mediums through which I am exercising giving and receiving. A business is a relationship, and I've found it to be a wonderful tool for toning my giving and receiving muscles. The more jewelry and charms that I give to others, the more money I receive in return. The more money I receive, the more money I give towards philanthropy. It's a cycle that continually revolves, growing and expanding each step of the way as I allow myself to give and receive more.
Here are some personal observations that I have made along the way.
When you stop giving to others, you open an empty space to receive from another human being. By participating in another person's moment of giving, you begin to understand that receiving is a type of giving that expands the circle wider. Giving can sometimes be as simple as doing nothing and letting others do instead.
Giving can feel invasive. Asking before giving allows another person the opportunity to choose if they are open to recieving. Appreciate any outcome.
You don't have to be open to receive nor do you have to be ready to give to another person. Always check in with where you are at in the moment, and this will be the most authentic experience. In being consciously aware, you are giving and receiving compassion from within, which is equally as important.
Sometimes the impetus to give or receive grows slowly over time. Be open to letting things change and communicate your need to mull an idea over. Answers can always wait. It's more important that giving and receiving come from genuine connection.
Give first to yourself. When your tank is full and you are balanced, then give to others. Never start the day on an empty tank.
When you are more giving to yourself, you are naturally more giving towards others.
All giving and receiving starts and ends from within. Always begin with your own truth in regards to giving and receiving, not what you think you should be to make others happy.