Across the world right now, there will be much talk of how Christmas can be celebrated in 2021, conversations around how many people can or should meet at any one time, what kind of public celebrations should be permissible, and so on. Of course, not everyone celebrates Christmas, but the same conversations about meeting together and sharing family time will still be relevant.
Naturally, the other topic many are thinking about is giving and receiving: ‘What do I buy for dad?’ ‘How much should I spend on the children?’ ‘What would I like myself’?’ And so on. But it isn’t always easy to make the right decisions around gifts at Christmas time. For the vast majority of us, the biggest driver will be our desire to show love to those we hold dear, but the messaging around us, playing loud and clear across the media, doesn’t often truly represent that, and why would it? After all, the glitzy adverts, Christmas music in the background, images of families around laden tables and so on are there for one purpose only. Their function isn’t to ensure our loved ones know how special they are; no, it’s understandably, to make the big brands their highest profits yet!
Which got me thinking about a question that’s been running around my head for some months now; in the world of coaching, how do we know who is a Giver, and who is a Taker? How many times do we see programmes offering to ‘10X our income’, or promising a ‘6-figure income in 90 days’, or ‘Painless Profits While We Sleep’? And how many of us can honestly say we haven’t been drawn into a free webinar, masterclass, or 5-day challenge by the promise we’ll learn the secrets of how to create the business we’ve dreamed of?
So, are these people Givers, or Takers? Does the word ‘free’ really mean free? Or does it actually mean, ‘I’ll give you a little, in order that I can take a lot’? It’s certainly worth thinking about, isn’t it?
Which led me to wonder, ‘Am I destined to be always a Giver, and never a Taker?’ As I thought about this new question, I realised something afresh; I enjoy being a Giver, it is in my nature, it is at the heart of everything I do, but if I only ever give, I’m in danger of burning out before my mission is done; maybe before my mission has hardly even started.
So how do I change that? By listening to my heart, and appreciating that if I only ever give, I deny the fact that I am worthy to receive also; I deny the opportunity to others who want to give to me. As 2021 draws to a close, I am learning – to give is deeply rewarding; to take, nowhere near so fulfilling, but to be open to receiving opens up a whole new world of possibilities.