This is the gift-giving season. And, as we know, it is better to give than to receive. If you’re like me, you’ve bought and exchanged gifts (and perhaps had some of those gifts exchanged at the store afterwards) and, maybe, even now Aunt Minnie is wearing one of the sweaters you bought her and nephew Andy is playing the new Wii game you gave.
It feels good to give. And yet, for me, there’s that nagging sensation of “how long will it last”? When does the sweater get placed neatly in Aunt Minnie’s dresser rarely to be seen again and when does the “new” Wii game get shuffled to the back of the deck of Wii games?
One thing I’m also trying to give during this season as well as strive to do more of next year is to give the ability to receive; give those I care about — whether my family, friends or business relationships — the time to connect with them, to really hear what they have to say, to engage with them at their level, to set aside the multi-tasking jumble that my brain usually becomes and receive their ideas, passions or idle thoughts. Even if it’s nothing more than a few minutes a day, it’s at least something.
Because, just perhaps, in these days where we are frantically trying to “stay connected” via e-mail, twitter, facebook, and voice mail, the greatest gift we can give is to push all that aside, empty our minds, reach out to someone and let them become connected to us.