With Christmas around the corner, I felt it necessary to write about the holiday and the gift of giving.
I wrote about the act of giving before when the thought was brought forth by someone very close to me. This is the most giving person I know. Everyone in the family knows that if she has it to give, she will give it. She’s only a quick phone call away.
For years she’s been giving her last whenever someone calls and asks for it. And for years she’s been bringing it up later with a lot of resentment and regret about a time she gave. I love her and it made me wonder if maybe, just maybe, some of those times she gave for the wrong reasons.
Me, her and I’m sure many others go through life giving, but giving for the wrong reasons. Giving with the expectation of something in return or giving because we don’t like saying no. Even giving out of obligation because we feel we have to or God will bless us. God won’t bless you if you give from a negative place.
Some of these instances are unavoidable and at times you truly have to give even when you don’t want to. The power at those times, lie in how you choose to react. Eckhart Tolle in his bestselling book A New Earth (<< affiliate link) describes this power and divides it into three states to truly be at peace in whatever it is that you do, including giving.
Three states; a state of acceptance, a state of enjoyment, or a state of enthusiasm.
And what if you cannot be in any of these states when you’re in the act of doing? The answer is simple, (maybe not) but just don’t do it.
Let’s talk about these three states briefly then I’ll challenge you:
The State of Acceptance
Whatever you cannot enjoy doing, you can at least accept that this is what you have to do. At any given moment in time and with any act in life you can attempt to be in a state of acceptance. The state in which you say to yourself: “for now, this is what this situation, this moment, requires me to do, and so I do it willingly.” Then you go forward and do it, with no regrets and no negative emotion.
The State of Enjoyment
This state builds on top of the previous one. The calmness that comes with acceptance in a given moment turns into a sense of aliveness when you actually begin to enjoy that moment. Once you accept it fully and are present in that moment, a lightbulb will go off when you actually can enjoy it. You may realize that whatever you’re doing isn’t all that bad, and in fact, you actually enjoy it. This is where the momentum lies.
The State of Enthusiasm
When you accept a moment and enjoy it so much you begin to act towards finding a way to cherish it and repeat it. You become enthusiastic about it. Enthusiasm is the highest and most divine state to live in. In enthusiasm, you’re truly at peace and excited about life in that present moment. It drives your actions in that moment and those actions are always positive and unopposed.
These states go hand in hand with giving. If you can’t be in either of them while giving, then don’t give. If you’ll expect something in return down the road, don’t give. If you only agree to give or loan something because you can’t say no, then work on saying no, and don’t give. The Universe doesn’t reward those who give in any other way.
Tolle states that: “enthusiasm gives out of its’ own abundance” So when you’re enthusiastic about giving, it comes from a state of abundance rather than lack. You won’t be concerned about getting it back some time in the future or the fact that God will bless you. Enthusiasm gives with no expectations but only to help and provide. This is the most powerful form of giving and can truly be called the gift of giving.
During the Christmas season, giving comes from a pure state of enjoyment and enthusiasm. This is expected as the holidays bring out the best in almost everyone. Love, family, peace, and joy are all alive and well during the holidays. We truly experience the enthusiastic gift of giving.
I challenge you to continue giving out of those three states moving forward and into the new year. Because it’s no other way to do so. It truly is a gift.
Feel free to let me know what you think and how you plan to implement or continue these gifts in the future.
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