Giving and receiving should go hand in hand, there should be some sort of balance with the two. For most of us though we consider ourselves one or the other. Either we are the type to drop what we are doing in order to help others no matter the cost or we take without being willing or able to return the favor. In truth we should be able to do both, and in being able to do both when the situation calls for it will help us to become healthier and happier.
Givers are the mothers, the health care workers, the teachers and all of those that selflessly give of themselves with out concern of getting anything in return. Our problem is we need to be needed, the action of giving brings satisfaction. The givers also have a hard time doing for themselves, taking a day off, going out with friends because in doing for others they find their worth. We also want others to acknowledge how much we do and when they don’t we can easily become resentful and angry. But what happens when there is no more left to give? What then? What is left of the mothers whose kids grow up and leave the home, of the teachers when they retire, or of the health care working when they eventually burn out? This is why there has to be a balance.
We all know one or two people in our lives that are takers. These are the ones that never offer to split the dinner bill, take the rides without offering gas money, and dominate the conversation so it seems that all they want to talk about are their problems without wanting to listen in return. They can seemingly take advantage of those that endlessly give of themselves. But is it right to say they take advantage? Or is it just that they know an opportunity when it comes their way?
We need a good balance of both, and we need to know which is appropriate in each situation. There will be times that call for giving, and those that call for taking. If you find yourself more of a giver, start to take time for yourself. Go for coffee with friends, take a yoga class, or go for a walk, but whatever it is make sure you find time for yourself each and every week. If you see yourself as more of a taker, start to be aware of those around you. Be present for the friends that need you to listen, and offer your help when you see that someone may need it. It is in this way that we can become both giver and receiver.