As my favorite holiday, Christmas, is approaching, I am reminded of the huge benefits of giving and receiving. For most people, giving to others is easy, but the receiving part is a little more challenging. Finding balance with giving and receiving is the secret to a stress-free holiday season.
Each year, I notice company marketing efforts highlight the importance of giving gifts and time to others. However, I believe if you keep giving and giving, and forget about receiving, you can feel drained. It is from this drained place of over-giving that the feeling of negativity arises. It’s time to change your focus to incorporate a more balanced approach, as a little giving and a little receiving is the key to a fun, fulfilled holiday season.
I am confident you already know how to give your time, your energy, and your resources to others, which is why I am going to talk with you about how to handle receiving goodwill from others.
The first rule is that YOU come first, yes YOU. You are the most important person in the world. If you do not take care of yourself, then giving can feel like a zero-sum game where you keep track of what you give to others and what others give to you. Each time you give a gift, offer assistance or make a kind gesture, you will feel even more drained, as you’re giving from an empty place.
To overcome giving from this place of negativity, I encourage you to make sure you feel fulfilled to ensure your giving is rooted in an overflow of goodwill and happiness.
Given how important it is to give to yourself, I want you to take a moment to commit — right now — to do one thing each day that fulfills you. Pick something that makes you FEEL good. It can be anything. Do you love to read? Do you enjoy getting a massage? Or do you prefer to practice yoga? Ask yourself, what is it that makes you FEEL good, but you don’t seem to have time to do? Then do it.
For myself, I love to soak in a warm bath filled with sea salt. As I write this, I am committing to setting aside 15 minutes each day for my love for soaking in the tub. Allowing myself to receive the great benefits of feeling good, allows me to give to others from a good place.
The second rule for this holiday season is to not be afraid to ask for help when you need it. There seems to be a misunderstanding about asking for help, as requesting help is commonly viewed as a burden. However, many people do not realize that allowing a friend, a family member, or even a stranger, to help you when you are in need, is an act of giving in a unique way. With allowing a person to help you, you are giving them the gift of giving. In return, they too feel the benefits of selfless acts of kindness.
This holiday season, give someone the opportunity to give you.