The Gift of Receiving

As the holidays near, parents everywhere strive to make Christmas morning magical for their children, from moving the Elf on a Shelf every night through the entire month of December, hanging outdoor lights and wreaths, and finding the perfect gift to surprise their little ones on Christmas morning. 

We all want our kids to experience the sheer joy of seeing presents under the tree, smiling from ear to ear, tearing open wrapping paper, and feeling thrilled to be handed yet another gift to open.  In these moments, we get to relive those electrifying moments from our own childhood..

I can’t help but wonder – when did we lose that sense of excitement around receiving?  At what point in our lives does that joy of receiving just start to wane?

As adults we say things like, “Oh, you shouldn’t have!” and “You didn’t have to do that!” and “Oh, but I didn’t get you anything!” after that dreaded moment when someone gives you a gift and you weren’t prepared with one in return. Or when a coworker buys you coffee and you feel compelled to return the favor soon to show that you’re just as generous.  

It’s like at some point we collectively begin to feel like we don’t deserve to be showered with gifts anymore.

When we were kids the word deserve was a concept we didn’t always understand. 

Deserve my birthday gifts?  Of course I deserve them – it’s my birthday!

We don’t think twice about deserving your gifts as a kid.  We are just so happy to receive them.  You would never hear “Oh you shouldn’t have” from a child who was handed a beautifully wrapped present.

Somewhere along the line we begin to feel like we’re not worthy anymore and it goes beyond receiving physical gifts.  It’s help and compliments too.

We hear “Can I help you with that!” and respond with “Oh it’s okay.  I got it.”

We hear “You did a great job with your presentation” and we say, “Oh I kind of messed up at one point.  Glad you didn’t notice.”

Giving and receiving are part of the flow of life.  When we resist a gift, we are saying no to an exchange of energy that we need to experience the flow of life at it’s finest.  Receiving with a full heart allows us to give with a full heart.

We are no less worthy of receiving than we were at 8 years old.  When you are handed a gift this holiday season, I encourage you to say thank you, reconnect to the thrill you felt as a child as you unwrap it, and bask in the beautiful and deserving energy that is you. 

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