Tuesday 20 July 2010

Is it truly better to give than to receive?

I have trouble receiving.  I'm very good at giving: if one can say that.  In fact, it's my natural groove, my habitual pattern.  I'm really comfortable being the person who supports, who's dependable, who's comforting, nurturing and empowering.

But what happens when I'm the one who has to accept support?  When I'm not giving support?

I feel exposed.  I feel out of control.  I hadn't thought of it before, but perhaps there's a subtle power in being the person who gives support.  I feel so much more vulnerable being the receiver of support. 

Yes, there is the argument that in order for me to operate in my comfort zone of giving, there needs to be those who receive.  But that doesn't have to be me receiving!  And, I acknowledge that, as human beings, we need balance: to give and to receive.  But that's so much easier said than done.

For me, recognising my need to control, my need to be the one who cleans up the mess is a significant insight. 

Perhaps even more significant is understanding that I do this in order to escape an even more subtle fear that I'm 'not enough' somehow.  Unconsciously, I think I have a belief pattern that states, "I'm most worthy as a person when I'm helping others..."

If I'm not helping others, what value do I have?  The answer to that question evokes fear.  In my head I believe we are all born worthy and deserving, with unlimited potential.  But my heart fears that may not apply to me.

Coming to terms with that understanding, and hopefully finding a way through it, seems so important now: how can I bring up a child to believe in themselves, if I can't quite muster that belief for myself? 

I could look at this as a limitation - a character flaw.  We all have failings and weaknesses.  The challenge is to discover the potential in any limiting situation, to find a bigger perspective that inspires me to move beyond my own limitations - enthusiastically rather than shame-facedly.

Suddenly, being utterly dependent on Dirk financially takes on new meaning.  It offers me the opportunity to heal a limiting belief, so that I can inspire genuine confidence in my child.  It is an opportunity to explore gracefully the vulnerability I feel when I'm not in control, so that I may appreciate the flow of life through giving and receiving. 

It's the beginning of a new journey of discovery...

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