Don’t Feel Like Giving

December 25, 2012

Would you prefer that the holidays just disappear… that people stop spending so much money buying and giving gifts? Are you feeling like you just don’t want to give any gifts?

Many people feel this way and they blame the media for over-hyping the holidays. They get upset when the Christmas decorations start to get sold in October. And they either don’t show up at holiday events, or they bring themselves and no food, drink or gift offering.

Scrooge is a great portrayal of this type of person and he represents about a third to one half of the population. I would refer to this subgroup as ‘takers,’ their counterpart being the ‘givers.’ It is no coincidence that ‘givers’ love the holidays… the only frustration they encounter around Christmas is from trying to do too much.

If you fall into the category of one that doesn’t feel like giving… there is no doubt you have really good reasons, excuses and rationalizations for your position. But… it could be time that you look at your underlying motives for wanting all the fuss and giving to stop. You may not be surprised to hear the word ‘selfish.’ Most of us are raised believing that being selfish is bad or wrong, but there are pros and cons to being a selfish type of person, just as there are healthy levels and unhealthy levels of being selfish.

The pros of being selfish… our self-care is very important, we can’t take care of the people and things we love if we aren’t taking care of ourselves first. Think of being in an airplane and sitting next to a child. If there is a change in air quality and the oxygen masks drop, you must put yours on first before assisting the child with theirs. The risk you run if you attempt to put the child’s on first… passing out and not being able to help yourself or the child.

When selfishness moves to an unhealthy level, a person cares more for self then others. This character trait runs rampant in alcoholics and addicts, who at the peak of their addiction will lie, steel and manipulate close family and friends, to get what they want.

If you are in a place in your life that others are accusing you of being selfish or wishing you would participate more than you have been… try working on some selflessness. Find opportunities to give to those you love, offer assistance when you wouldn’t typically bring food or drink to a social gathering, and volunteer your time to those in need…You just may find that “giving” has many dimensions of satisfaction.

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