Life & Love

Receiving Gifts Without Guilt


Receiving Gifts Without Guilt

Since it is the time of year of gift giving, I thought this might be a good point of conversation of guilt over receiving gifts that comes up often even when it is not Christmas. Fortunately, the Christmas holiday allows most to let go of feeling guilty about receiving gifts from other for various reasons.

But even when Christmas opens that doorway of gift exchange, there is always that underlying fear that your gift to another won’t be as big or appreciated as you would like or worse, you give an extravagant gift and get a $5 gift certificate to McDonalds. Ouch!

Hard to not take that one personally but we want to bring back the attention to how you feel when someone gives you a gift without strings attached or the subtle or not so subtle message that you are on the bottom of the gift list.

Whether it be their time, money, effort, a job referral or the clothes off their back, do you have the capability of just accepting a gift without believing it will cost you in the end, feeling not worthy of it or that you now must match the gift in someway in order to make things ‘even.’

Regardless of which definition matches your behavior of receiving a gift, if it makes you uncomfortable in any way, you have an issue of being worthy of receiving a gift for just what it is…. a gift. Not a contract, not a challenge to match it, not a statement that I have more than you so I know you need this but just having the capability of accepting a giving energy coming your way.

Remaining Balanced

Giving and receiving are part of the same cycle and we each give and receive in our own ways. But we can lose our balance when we try to be too controlling on either side of the cycle. By allowing ourselves to receive we are given the gift of seeing through another person’s eyes and therein lies the issue.

If you are judging your value and worth all the time, you will assume what you see is ‘less than’ energy. Sometimes we may find ourselves struggling to respond to another’s gift of an expensive present with something equally expensive, or feeling like we have to throw a dinner party for someone who has thrown one for us.

But when these are done out of a sense of obligation, their energy changes from something that shares to something that drains.

Accepting a person’s gift is a gift in itself. Sincere appreciation for their acknowledgement and their effort joins our energy with theirs in the cycle of giving and receiving and nurtures everyone involved.

If you find you have difficulty receiving gifts from others, you can now decide to allow yourself to just be a conduit for gratitude and accept whatever is offered on behalf of a loving, giving universe.

Here are two suggestions that might help change the guilt that comes with receiving gifts you might not think you do not deserve.

1.Take your attention off of yourself.

This gifting is not about you. The person who is giving you a gift in whatever form it takes wants you to have it. It doesn’t matter if you asked for it. It doesn’t matter if you think you deserve it. What matters is that you honor the person that is gifting it to you.

Keep in mind how wonderful YOU feel when you give a gift to someone, so don’t steal their thunder away from them when they are giving you something. They also want to feel good about themselves, so let them have it without conditions or stipulations that you must now match it or thinking: “Good God, I didn’t get them anything!”

2. Just say thank you and feel the warmth and gratitude in your heart.

Now it IS the time to make it about you! Don’t focus on the gift. Try to stop that inner dialogue of why are they giving this to me, what the hell am I supposed to do with this or what do they really want from me or now what do I do?”

There really is no need to feel guilty about accepting a gift from someone even if they do have ulterior motives and you know it. Be kind to them and be kind to yourself, knowing how much you really, really, deserve to get gifts. The Universe is giving them to you all the time, acknowledge and be in gratitude of those on a daily basis and you will find when others give you gifts, those guilty feelings just might not be there anymore.

Susan Z’s Verdict

If these reactions sound familiar, you can consciously decide to allow yourself to just receive your gifts with arms, minds and hearts open and simply say “THANK YOU!” I love giving gifts and usually offer them the statement of “don’t get all emotional about this, I just wanted you to have it.”

But I am also very guilty sometimes of not wanting to feel emotionally obligated to someone who thinks I am so wonderful and wants to do something nice for me or offer me a gift and now I have to think they are wonderful back, even if I don’t! Keep your focus on the giving and you will find that you will slowly learn how to receive in the same energy, simply… just love from the Universe.

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