- have trouble accepting a compliment?
- struggle when others offer you sympathy?
- feel anxious when you get a gift? resist signs of friendship and love?
“It’s better to give than to receive.” Our parents teach us this from the time we’re young and society reinforces it.
We wondered about the origin of this quote. It turns out that it comes from the Bible.
It is more blessed to give than to receive.
Do you notice the subtle difference?
The statement has evolved into an absolute. It started out as a relative statement. Receiving is a blessing in and of itself. We’re even more blessed when we give.
But notice that it’s not bad to be the receiver!
Completing the circle
Think about it – there can’t be a giver without a receiver. If we can’t graciously receive, we deny the giver the full joy that should come from giving.
Unselfish people feel empty if they always “get.” Giving completes the circle. So it’s important to be a good receiver as well as a good giver.
Ask yourself “Why?”
At its most extreme, not being able to graciously receive may be a sign of an underlying problem. For example, it may mean that there is a lack of self-esteem. Someone may feel unworthy of the gift or the compliment.
I think women may have more of a problem with this than men. We often get a compliment and immediately diminish it with a negative statement.
Some people feel that they gain power by giving. If they receive something, they owe the giver. Others may give to impress others. Some people give to try to earn friendship.
If you really have trouble receiving, ask yourself why. It’s important to find the underlying reason so you can live your life more fully as a giver and a receiver.
My mom was one of the most giving people you could have ever met. She seemed to struggle with receiving. One example – she always tried to buy when we went out for lunch or dinner. If I grabbed the check, she protested and protested. I finally told her that I couldn’t feel any joy in her buying for me if she never let me buy for her. After that, she let me take my turns!
How to be a good receiver
- Start by giving without condition or expectation. In order for you to experience the full circle, you have to participate on both sides. Start by giving.
- Recognize that receiving is part of giving. You bring joy to the giver when you willingly accept their gift.
- Be grateful, not objectionable. Some people are so busy objecting to the gift that they take away all the pleasure the giver feels. Don’t immediately bring up all the reasons why you don’t deserve the compliment or the gift. Just say thanks!
- Receive generously. If you learn to receive as generously as you give, the givers in your life will live more fully. Don’t hold back your appreciation!
Receiving graciously is a gift in itself – to you and to the giver. That’s what thanksgetting is all about!
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So today is Thanksgiving and we’re so thankful that you joined us! Check in on us next time as we ask, “Who gets your leftovers?” Until then, here’s to your bigg success!
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