“The only ‘no’ in my vocabulary begins with k.” My friend, Joann, got this response when she asked for help. I loved it! The person she asked for help, went on to say, “Just let me know what you need.”
Okay, well, I admit it is not a good philosophy for those of us who have a problem setting boundaries, or for those of us who hang out with sociopaths, or, for those of us who are already in trouble with authorities for saying yes too much, but for those of us who tend to say “no” too quickly, or need to learn generosity, what a concept!
I frequently hear variations of this concern while speaking about living drama-free.
Burnout happens when we are giving to others because:
- we think it is expected of us
- we have always been worried about pleasing others
- we are not taking care of ourselves
- we have not set clear boundaries
- we have strings attached to our giving
- we have never learned to receive from others
For a period in my own life I “played the martyr,” complaining to my husband about everything I was doing. He woke me up by saying, “Then please stop. No one needs what you are doing. We need your heart.”
Serving from guilt, self-imposed expectations, or psychological need is not only not satisfying, it is not love, and, doesn’t feel like love to others either.
As the attendant at a $5 car wash was drying off my window I thought, “He probably expects a tip. Should I give him one? Always err on the side of giving too much rather than too little.” I pulled two dollars out of my wallet and a minute later I was embarrassed that I had even thought twice about it.
When he turned his head to receive my offering, I saw his right eye was horribly damaged.
I should have given him more.
The opportunity to give is a gift. I can forget about the practical questions; i.e. Are they manipulating me? Will they use the money wisely? Can I afford it?.
(Thanks to Catherine Korpolinski for posting this pic on FB)
“All that you send into the lives of others comes back into your own.” -Mary Kay Ash
I know I have shared this quote before, but this morning I was thinking about it…in order to maintain a productive attitude. This was one of those days when it seemed as if I was giving more than I was getting back. To top off the challenge, I discovered someone appears to have plagiarized one of my creative projects, word for word.
The temptation would be to become cynical about giving, instead of trusting that all comes back to me in the end. Because, if I become cynical or stingy, that’s exactly what will come back to me.
(BTW, right after I relaxed about this, I received an unexpected gift.)
Possible reasons for the malfunction:
- I did it so I would look good
- I did it because I felt guilty
- I was arrogant or condescending
- I was feeding my ego and patting myself on the back
- I complained about it the entire time
- I did it expecting something in return
- My motive was misunderstood
Simple, no-strings attached love for the recipient of our service will correct each of these issues. Unadulterated generosity needs no defense or assistance.
Experience the joy.
Photo courtesy of kootation.com
No commercialism. No hype. Want the best Valentine’s Day ever?
Forget about who doesn’t love you or who does and how they are going to show it. Let go of your expectations and/or disappointments.
Give love today. Give sincere and simple “valentines” to people in your path who need to be seen and loved. Give candy, money, compliments, emails, hugs, or kisses…whatever.
You’ll have so much fun and you’ll make an exquisitely big difference for people like you who just need love and feel the lack of it…particularly today.
The love you get is the love you give. Happiest Valentine’s Day ever!
Stepping into the awkward silence of an elevator with an Oriental couple and their small daughter, I felt their discomfort, so I complimented the little girl’s new, shiny pink sandles. Her eyes lit up as I showed interest in her and her special shoes, so I jokingly said, Do you think they would fit me? This normally would cause a child consternation, but, Lilly looked unmoved. With graciousness, her father said, Lilly, give the nice lady your shoes. Lilly did not hesitate for a moment.
I was so impressed with this custom of giving the object of admiration to the admirer and how it embeds a spirit of generosity and kindness in children early in their lives! Wow.
When we give joyfully, we only lose the fear of loss.
All you send into the lives of others comes back into your own. – Mary Kay Ash
I quote this again because I woke up this morning thinking about resentment, hatred, grudges and jealousy and how they always punish the giver. If we REALLY understood that, everything, I mean EVERYTHING we send out comes back into our own life, I think we would be way more careful about these things!
Give and it shall be given to you…whatever the gift may be!!!
So, if I want security, significance, kindness, companionship, happiness, money, joy, etc., I must give those things to others first. No use crying about my lack. It’s how it works. ALWAYS.
Flee from hate, mischief and jealousy. Wake Up and Live! – Bob Marley