“You might say, “How do I know if I’m in a receiving mode or not?” And we say, you always feel good when you’re in a receiving mode. When someone offers you a compliment, do you receive it, or do you sort of just shrug it off? There’s something about believing that you must justify your existence through your effort or through your perseverance, through your struggle. And many of you just have not practiced the receiving mode. “ — Abraham
I quite often quote Abraham on my Facebook page and I was so struck by this one that I wanted to write about it. How much of the time are you conscious or intentional in the way you receive? Another powerful inquiry I recently thought about was how do I allow others to contribute to me, and in receiving what I’m offered, who will I then be for the people I love or care about the most? As Abraham states above, it’s something that needs to be practiced let alone considered.
In the past I used to have trouble with asking for help. After practicing that for a while, I started to realize how much of “help” was showing up without me even asking. Although then there’s the receiving part. I thought that from practicing asking for help and then allowing the help that I was good at receiving. I have gotten better at it and now I have a powerful perspective I didn’t have before which helped to cause a major shift.
I recently learned that in the way I was receiving, I was going through the processes of rationalizing my need, justifying why I don’t need something, or how I could possibly do it myself. What also helped with shifting my perspective was seeing how I was afraid of seeming needy, high maintenance or unreasonable in my need. One way this has had an impact on my life and my interactions with others, is that I’ve had a hard time saying no to them and if I did, I would justify my reasons.
Other ways your perspective about needs may be affected is pretending not to need, hinting around it, getting validation of what you need and therefore deserve, or feeling guilty about it. Some of you may even go as far as making yourself wrong for needing, or expressing your needs as a demand. Then there are those of you who may even get angry if your needs aren’t met but then why not wonder why your needs aren’t being met in the first place?
When a person who is providing what you need, or giving you a gift in the many forms it comes in such as a Birthday present, a compliment, or an action from intentional effort, how are you practicing receiving? This calls for a distinction between taking and receiving. Although there are many definitions of both take and receive, here are the definitions I am choosing to focus on for the sake of this topic. To receive is to “experience; take into mind; accept from another by hearing or listening; to have something bestowed” whereas to take is to “seize or capture; hold, grasp or grip; to get into one’s hands by possession, control or force.”
To authentically receive, one needs to be truly present in the action of receiving. This involves really acknowledging what’s being given, in the moment it’s being given. You may want to ask what motivated or inspired the person in the giving. Even when you think it’s obvious such as when it’s your Birthday, you can still ask how they ended up picking out your gift. It is then important to communicate about what you are receiving will provide for you. You could also “say” all of this by just pausing and taking a moment to be with that person and with their gift without using words. The best part of receiving in this way is when the person giving, just wants to give you more.
So if you did receive in this way, who are you then being for those you love and care for? Possibly someone that receives as if it’s a contribution to you and your life, therefore you have more to give to others. Maybe the act of receiving, in and of itself, is the gift that keeps on giving.