This Is A Time Of Giving But Do You Know How To Receive?

“The only gift I have to give, is the ability to receive. If giving is a gift, and it surely is, then my gift to you is to allow you to give to me. 
” Jarol Kintz

Are you shopping until you’re out of breath these days for family and friends?  The reason why shopping for others makes us so giddy is that giving is so good for the giver.  Giving generates a good feeling for the average normal person, thus, the famous Bible verse “there is more joy in giving than in receiving”.  No one could deny that, but while you are in your shopping frenzy, are you also treating yourself?  If your answer is yes, that’s great.  You should.  But if your answer is no, why not?

While Giving to Other is Great, Giving to Yourself, and Accepting Gifts from Others is Equally Important

There is no shortage of selfish people in this world who think about themselves first all the time, but there are also those maybe more rare people who are uncomfortable receiving while they don’t mind giving all the time.  So, what now, is there anything wrong wanting to give? No, there’s nothing wrong with giving as long as you also know how to receive.  If you like to give, then you need to understand that someone else might want to be able to give you as well.

Are you someone who has no problem giving, but uncomfortable receiving?  If so, you’re not alone.  But where does this feeling come from?  In this post we are going to try to answer such question.

Why is it Hard for you to Receive?

I have to say that I grew up around this behavior because my own mother while being one of the most generous people I’ve ever met to this day, she had some issues with receiving.  Of course as a child I could only observe without understanding my mother’s behavior when it came to receiving.  Today, however, it’s all so very clear to me.

People who have trouble receiving are usually suffering with low self esteem. They feel that they are NOT worthy of gifts, so it’s very hard for them to accept gifts. Not because they are thinking they don’t need or don’t want your gift, but that they are not worthy of our gift.

No one was born with low self esteem, but unfortunately, low self esteemed is learned at a young age.  As most subconscious programming it happens mainly between the ages of zero and seven, and can even be emphasized some more in later years.

What are the Reasons you have Hard Time Receiving?

  • You were never or rarely offered gifts as a child
  • You were taught either by action or by words (or both) that gifts are not important
  • You were forced to give your wages to your parents as a teenager or young adult
  • Your overall young years where never really about you
  • Your individual needs were never fulfilled

There might be more reasons out there, but those are strong reasons that I’ve known to be determinant in people having hard time receiving while they have no problem giving.

If you are used to reading this blog, you now understand that what you’ve been taught as a child becomes your subconscious programming.  It just happens.  You don’t have to understand it or even believe it, it just is.

In the case of my mother, she spent her whole life not even giving a second thought about why she had issues with receiving.  She actually never even thought she had such issues. For her it just was “normal” to be that way, because as far as she knew, it was “her normal”.  The real cause, however, was because she had grown up with basically each of the case scenarios mentioned above.  No wonder she had a hard time accepting gifts, always trying to explain people why they shouldn’t have.

In my mom’s early years there was no such thing as personal development blogs and easy access life coaches to help her understand where such issue came from.  Most people would just live their lives with whatever baggage they carried around without a second thought.

Today it’s different, however, and I’m glad that I had the chance later in my mother’s life to help her open her eyes, and to show her that she deserved to receive the best gifts in the world.

Why should you Accept Gifts Gracefully?

1-      When you accept gifts gracefully you are honoring the person offering you the gift by letting them know that you appreciate their gift.

2-      When you accept gifts gracefully you are giving the right message to the universe.  If you don’t know how to accept or refuse to accept gifts you are telling the Universe that you don’t like to receive. Therefore, you are vibrating this negative emotion (of none accepting gifts) and you won’t receive according to the law of attraction.

3-      When you accept gifts gracefully you are making the giver feel good about himself or herself.

If there is more joy in giving than in receiving, there must be a receiver that is grateful and happy to receive.  There is no joy in giving to someone who refuses or makes it hard to receive joyfully.

If you are one of such people who have a hard time to receive because of your background, think about this next time someone offers you a gift, and receive such gift gracefully.  You and the person giving you will both feel much happier.

So, who are you? Are you one who can receive? Do tell us down below!

39 thoughts on “This Is A Time Of Giving But Do You Know How To Receive?”

  1. Hi Sylviane

    I love, love, love this post. Oh so true it is easier for many of us to give than receive. My mother is just like yours. She always says to people why they should not have given her bla bla. She had a pretty awful childhood so I understand it.

    I used to deflect compliments and sometimes still do although mostly now I say thank you. If someone told me how lovely and slim I was I used to immediately tell them where the one roll of fat was on my body! How bad is that?

    For those of us that follow LOA we know receiving is so important so this is great advice you have here Sylviane.

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    1. Hi Sue,

      Wow, our mothers and us look so much alike don’t we?

      Deflecting compliments, oh boy, do I know about that? It’s of the same family as having trouble receiving gifts, because a compliment is a gift.

      My mother and me have deflected compliments forever and I only do better with this since I’ve been studying the law of attraction. Until then, I was like you always putting myself down when I received a compliment about my person or my achievement, I sometimes still catch myself doing it, because it’s so deep in me. My mother has done that her whole life.

      I tell you we need some fixing in this area, don’t we?

  2. Sylviane,

    You know I have to agree that there is something said for those who love to give but have a hard time receiving. A sense of worth may be lost some where. I know that the nurturing personality (yellow) love to give and are probably the most likely apprehensive to receiving.

    But to be in balance one should give and receive freely. I love the aspect that you captured about honoring the person who is giving you something.

    Ken Pickard
    The Network Dad
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    1. Wow Ken, you know about color personalities? I sure do too, and I’ve written an article about the subject few years ago. I think I should write a blog post about this, but so few people know this concept. Guess what? My mom is a Yellow, that goes to tell you on top of her upbringing.

      You’re right, we need to be balanced, able to give as well as receive.

      Thanks for passing by 🙂

  3. Hi Sylviane,

    Nice to come again on your blog and reading the article.Here i want to confess that i am one of them who dont like to receive gifts but always ready to gift others.Till now i dont know the reason but after reading your article it made me think for a while ,why i really dont like to receiving gifts and after thinking i got it may be i am shy to recieve some time,some time i think i have enough of things so y to take gifts.

    But i never thought of other way like how i love to gift others ,others also like to gift me ,i never understood that but after reading your article it hit my mind and next time i am going to accept the gift.

    Thank You
    Shorya Bist
    From Youthofest
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    1. Hi Shorya,

      What more pleasure than to here that my post made someone think, Shorya. There are so many things we do or don’t do without thinking WHY, but then you read an article somewhere that makes you think and say, but of course! And that’s just great.

      I’m so glad that you will be accepting gifts freely going forward.

  4. Hi Sylviane

    Till this day I only believe in giving and only giving, it can be gifts or anything other person likes or is in need of.
    Whenever a person has tried to gift me, I really have ignored the person or the gift.I never realized that he may get hurt or will feel bad about that.
    From now onwards I think I should start honoring the other person by accepting his gifts.

    Thanks for sharing this great thought.

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    1. Hi Sapna,

      I’m glad I decided to write this article, because it looks like so many people have that issue – problem with receiving!

      If you ignore the person who gives you, just put yourself in their shoes and think about how you would feel if someone ignored YOU and your gift? You would feel bad wouldn’t you?

      It’s very important for yourself and others that you’d be able to accept a gift gracefully. Everyone will feel better and it’s better for prosperity.

      Thank you for your honest input, Sapna.

  5. Are you calling me out again Sylviane?

    Okay, this use to be me but I definitely do not have nor have I ever had low self-esteem. I think it came from my Mom never letting us spend more then $5 on a gift. She made us feel like we were penny pinching so much that I hated to take gifts from others because I thought their families were the same way. I didn’t want them wasting money on me.

    I also learned this though over the years. Someone once told me that I was insulting the other person when I didn’t accept their gift graciously. I could see that when I really looked at it that way. It’s certainly not that I didn’t appreciate their gifts. Some people just love to give whether you want them to or not.

    I still would much rather give then receive but I’ve learned my lesson. I now graciously accept and thank them profusely.

    Great post Sylviane and I have a feeling a lot of people will be able to relate to this one.

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    1. Hi Adrienne,

      Yes, in your case it’s not lack of confidence, it isn’t always is, but you’ve understood where it comes from. If you grew up to be cheap about gifts, then it will make you feel “bad” if someone offers you a gift that’s more than “your subconscious can reasonably accept”. In your case it was $5 dollars, so most gifts would have made you feel this way.

      As I was telling Barbara, those subconscious beliefs are all based on a “lack mentality” which we all have a good doze of. Once we realize that the universe is abundant, that there’s no lack, and that some of such abundance is ours it helps us to cut down (so to speak) on that lack mentality, and accept what is given to us graciously.

    1. Hi Barbara,

      Yes, it seems that lots of people have this problem and it all comes down to the lack mentality that most people grow up with and around as well as other issues.

      In any case it comes from something negative. There is no need to accept gifts gracefully in a perfect world, is there?

      Thank you for coming, Barbara, and have a great trip 🙂

  6. Hi Sylviane(beautiful name),

    I think you were calling my name in this post Sylviane. I always like to give but never to receive. I even don’t like to receive gifts from my husband. He kindly gives me gift cards in occasions such as my birthdays, mother day, and our anniversary and I spend the gift cards on my kids and not me and he gets upset with me. I never thought it is hurtful to the person offering the gift. I thought since I am spending it on our kids, it will be fine with him. Boy, I think I am wrong. Your post shed some light here.

    Thanks for such an eye-opener post. I will never look at receiving the same way I did again.

    Be Blessed,

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    1. I am so glad of the responses that this post is receiving. It seems that quite a few people have issues with receiving, and no it’s not healthy for the person herself or himself or for the giver. If your husband wants to offer you a gift, then it is for YOU, if he wanted to give to your children, then I’m sure he could do that too, and in such case it would be for THEM. That’s why he gets upset, I assume.

      On Mother’s Day my brother and I broke our money pig to buy a nice gift to my mom. It could be a piece of jewelry or a kitchen small appliance, but always something real nice that she would enjoy, but when she was saying, why didn’t you keep your money for yourselves? We didn’t like to hear that. That’s why we had that money, right? To buy what we wanted. Around Mother’s Day, we wanted nothing more than buy my mom a gift. Giving feels good, so the receiver much allow the giver to feel good.

      Thank you for your input and thank you for your compliment about my name. I do get that a lot in America. Americans seem to like my French name a lot  I used to not even like it as a kid, but that’s no longer the case. I love it now!

  7. Hey Sylviane,
    A very nice post!! I truly believe in the concept of gifts. Gifting is a way of showing concern and love towards each others. It is a way to keep the memories intact. When somebody gifts something, it becomes a duty on our part to accept that gift graciously and acknowledge the efforts put in by your loved one. Thanks for writing this wonderful post and drawing attention to this aspect.

    1. Thank for coming Aayna,

      Yes, we should see receiving as someone that is owned to the giver.

  8. Hi Sylviane

    I like getting gifts. When kids we had to save our own money and spend it on gifts. I went without stuff that I would have liked to have bought…because I had to buy for others. So it was hard to actually buy what I wanted when I could. Bought the cheaper variety instead of what I would like to have. I have since outgrown that though.

    What drives me nuts is those people that think they have to give you a gift BECAUSE you gave them a gift! My reaction to that is “what are you trying to do, out do me by one?” I don’t say it, but that is the way I feel. I am not talking about Christmas time here either.

    Then there are those other people that are always trying to buy you with stuff (like food). I worked with people like that. Wouldn’t have been so bad if they weren’t such picky eaters and I could have brought in some home baked goods that they would eat. I am so glad I am done with those fools from work.

    If I had the money I would love to go shopping for strangers and surprise them for no reason at all. Or pay for their groceries when I am behind them in line at the store. My heart is in the right place, but unfortunately not my finances. But that is one of my incentives to work for.

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    1. Hi Mary,

      Yes, of course, when giving is not done with the right intention, which is, well, to give without any type of hidden intent, then you might as well keep your gift.

      Giving a gift just because someone gave you one is the wrong way to go…. that tells me, well, you feel obligated, and I don’t like that.

      Mary, I know it’s not easy, but do not ever say that you can’t afford something 🙂 Say everyday in your head or out loud things like …. I’m rich, I have more than I need, I can afford everything I want… until you believe it 🙂 Put your mind (subconscious mind) where you heart is, so to speak, which is in a position where you will be able to give as you wish.

      Just this week I told an acquainted of mine to just STOP saying “I’m poor” which he says all the time. I know too well the impact of such statements.

      1. Oh, I never say “poor”. Before I used to refer as “financially challenged”.

        For now though each night I write down that I am grateful for the money I have. Also grateful for the wealth of abundance coming to me. Also at the end of my 10 things I am grateful for is, I am grateful for the beautiful house waiting for me in Shasta County.

        It takes me out and beyond the situation I am in now.
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        1. Oh, Great. I am so glad to hear that.

          I’ve just read your incredible story at your blog and left a comment. Thank you for sharing 🙂

  9. It’s so true, that giving is easier than receiving! That would seem to go against common sense completely. I mean, why would we not want to receive good things? I think so many people get it ingrained in their heads that they aren’t worthy. The meaning of “humble” gets taken way too far.

    This made me think of my dad and laugh a little because he is so bad at receiving but he makes it funny every time. He is the kind of guy who will pretend to hate your gift, or tease you about it, or make a silly joke because it’s too hard to say thank you and be glad! i inherited some of that from him and at some point I remember my mother telling me that when I received a gift, or even a compliment, I just had to say thank you. That’s it. No jokes, no denials, just thank you and be grateful. That really made me think about it and I have definitely changed my perspective on receiving since then!

    You make some very good points here about low self esteem, which I think is the most likely culprit. Especially with a lot of religious upbringings, people tend to put themselves down.

    Another great point here is that giving feels good, and knowing you made someone happy feels good… so if you can’t receive, then you’re denying someone that enjoyment.

    This is a great topic for this time of year with all the gift giving. I hope people will realize it’s just as important to receive gracefully as it is to give.
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    1. Hi Carol,

      Guess what? I use to do this a lot, like your day and you. When someone would compliment me about something I would “jokingly” deny the compliment by putting myself down in a funny way. However, jokingly or not it’s still the same issue, it means that we feel unworthy and we’re even SAYING it under the cover of a joke.

      I’m glad your mom made you realize that being thankful and saying thank you, is the right way to go!

  10. I have always been like this when it comes to receiving anything. In my relationships, I always was a giver and that is probably why most of those relationships are in my past. Maybe they were just the wrong people on the receiving end and I learned allot. I still tend to give more than I receive, but my heart is in it and I don’t give just to get something in return. I know some people like that and they always end up getting hurt because their expectations got the best of them.

    This holiday season is going to be tough for many people this year and I hope people still continue to give with their heart. Now, as being on the receiving end, you betcha I love getting gifts and I have been blessed to have a good family that is generous, but getting gifts isn’t as important than the person doing the gift giving.
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    1. Hi Sonia,

      Yes, giving is more important than receiving as a whole, but when you receive “well” you are giving in return to the giver. Don’t forget that!

      I was always the giver in my relationships too and that’s why there are also in the past. We need to be balanced. Not always the same person has to give, it’s not fare and not healthy for relationships to last.

  11. Loved this one Sylviane!

    I can so well relate to all that you wrote about receiving gifts, because my hubby comes in that category. He is a great giver, but when we want to gift him something or even if anyone else wants to give him something, he always refuses. Yes, there are lots of reasons for that, which you already mentioned and most of them hold good in his case too.

    However, I hope with time he will learn to overcome them because I will be forwarding your post soon after here to him. 🙂 I guess in his case it might be that he thinks he’s not worthy enough or whatever he might do for others – but he isn’t worth it that others do anything for him. A lot might be connected to his past and how he was raised I guess.

    Thanks for sharing this with all of us and bringing it to our notice. I wish and hope more and more people learn to give and receive with grace in their lives too. 🙂
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    1. Wow, Sorry Harleena,

      This comment of yours got stuck in my blog comment lala land, which I can’t even turn off on this blog which has its own mind it seems. 🙂

      I hope that your husband will overcome this. I think that the best way to show this to someone is by asking them how they would feel if the person they give to would react like them… food for thought, right?

  12. Hi Sylviane,

    I was and still one of who struggling on receiving gifts 🙂 No, I receive gift ’cause else the giver feels so sad, but I know it’s in me. I feel I’m bit improved with that, but not totally though.

    Actually I’ve not used to get gifts much from childhood. LOW SELF-ESTEEM? Now you have a point there which is valid for me. Still I have this when I accept payments from clients, I mean I do say my worth for the work and time. But I take a lot of time to think and tell about it. Do you think it’s still relate with this Sylviane? 🙂

    Thank you for this one as it make feel better about receiving 🙂

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    1. Hi Mayura,

      Yes, it is related… People who have trouble accepting gifts usually have trouble accepting payments even if they know that it’s a just payment and owned to them.

      I had that for years, and still have to watch for it to this day. I hope that this post can help you reflect and be more willing to receive.

      Nice to see you here as always 🙂

  13. Hi Sylviane ,

    Nice Blog …. enjoyable to read.
    Had you ever had an / the experience that matters will fall in the right places if you
    decide and dare to detached from issues like suffering Job lost and finding a / the Job All which suits you better than it seemd at front?
    Or going after something you realy would like to have and persued it for a long time
    and than stop chasing it and having a way of knowing that it will work out alright?

    Kind regards,
    Keep up the good work!

    1. Hi Jos,

      Of course I had. The more you detached from an outcome the more you will be getting what you want. If you look in my recent past posts you’ll find a post about detachment that explains just that.

      The more you can detach from fear the better of you’ll be too.

      1. Hello Sylviane,

        Thanks for your reply.
        You wrote:
        “The more you can detach from fear the better of you’ll be too. ”

        To find a/the way to really detach from anything or something as fear is hard and for some people they detach via an ilusive way and call it detachment while it really is avoiding or denial they are doing.

        Are you willing to share your point of view about how to really detach?

        Thanks in advance,


        1. Hey Jos,

          Yes, we cannot confuse denial with detachment it’s completely different. If you deny a fear, but such fear is still in you that different then from stepping away from the fear to try to improve and loosen such fear.

          Let me give you an example… I know a couple of fat ladies that have a strong denial about how unhealthy they are. I see them eat food that I would be afraid to eat myself with my size 6. That’s denial. They refuse to look at themselves and see the problem.

          Now, let say those same women decide to lose weight and start eating healthier food and portions, but as they do so they refuse to focus too much about their present state, they envision themselves being skinny and eat healthy, but detached from it at the same time, so they don’t become obsessed by weight loss. That’s detachment.

          I hope it helps a bit. Let me know.

  14. Sylviane, my first response is “ummm heck yes and what makes people not be good receivers” but as I think about it more, I have seen this a lot! It’s just like people who can’t accept compliments or does so with negativity…same principle I believe.

    I’d venture to say that most people don’t even know that they feel “unworthy” so the next question is how do we get to people to understand they are exhibiting the behaviors you’ve noted? I, for one, can do so by sharing this to everybody I know. 🙂
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    1. Hi Kesha,

      Yes, this is the same as having a hard time accepting compliments or doing so with “negativity” as you pointed out.

      I was doing this all the time, because that’s how I was raised. That’s what we did at home.

      What a beautiful dress? Oh it’s an old thing, my mom would say.

      I never, ever, heard the word “thank you” when someone complimented my mother my whole childhood, so I did just that too. Someone would compliment me and I would bring myself down, automatically. It took me some learning to change such programming. 🙂

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