In the World
Well, it’s the last 3 days before Christmas. My Xmas Gift Giving series has almost finished.
Today it is time to write about a gift for the most important person of all – YOU.
How I Learnt This Lesson
It always seems to be the female of the family who is responsible for organising gifts for Xmas. In my case for years I was the one who came up with gift ideas for members of my family from aunts, uncles, grandmothers and from us to our children. Add to that, two members of my family have birthdays a week before Xmas – more gift ideas required. Even for me as a Creative, it was mentally and physically exhausting. Often, I was silly enough to give my best ideas to others and then worked even harder to come up with other gift ideas for my family from me (or Mum & Dad as it said on the gift tag).
There’s always a straw that breaks the camel’s back. For me it was when I told off a male who changed my Xmas gift idea for me to kitchen items. That just was not what I expected. Forget the fact that they have been useful, I wanted something personal.
That’s when I decided that, the following year, I would buy me a gift for Xmas from me – something special and not necessarily expensive. It had to be something that acknowledged my appreciation of me. It could be physical or an experience. This did not include chocolates or alcohol because I wanted my gift to me to recognise either my loves or my talents. Each year I wrapped it and wrote myself a message of love and appreciation from me. My gift was opened in secret either on Xmas eve, Xmas night or Boxing Day.
This year I accidentally (or deliberately because I am not sure) told my husband that I had bought a certain book. He wanted to give it to me for Xmas. ‘No’ I said ‘This is a gift to me from me.’ ‘Oh well’ he said ‘I will read it after you.’ He might but not before I have savoured the enjoyment of reading it. This Christmas I have revealed my secret and wrapped it up and put it under the Xmas tree.
The Baby Boomer Woman’s Dilemma
As Baby Boomer women, we have grown up being told that it’s important to give to others. Inside I am still fighting the feeling of ‘being selfish’ by buying a gift for me. BUT I will stand tall in myself for doing it because I must love and appreciate myself first. I must demonstrate my self-respect before I can truly feel happy giving to others. My new motto is ‘Do unto yourself as you would have others do unto you’ because the other way round is often people-pleasing and begging for love and appreciation.
The Gift of Receiving
Sometimes The Universe seems to have to teach me three times in quick succession for me to learn something. First – the paragraph above. Second a discussion with a friend about ‘Receiving’. Thirdly – I bought the December issue of ‘Oprah’ magazine and inside was an article by Martha Beck (whom I admire) on ‘To You, from You’. She crowd sourced the ‘self-giving’ problem (read ‘put up a Facebook post) and the three main self-giving things people wanted were – Time, Less Stuff & Acceptance (ie forgiveness & permission). None of these gifts cost money.
Last Words –
You can give gifts to family and friends. You can give gifts of time or money to charities. If you don’t already do it, the most important one, I believe, is to give a gift to yourself. Secret or open – it’s your choice.
I will repeat those words – ‘Do unto yourself as you would have others do unto you’. Give yourself a gift as often as required throughout the year.
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