How do we step into the cycle of giving and receiving in a balanced and open-hearted way?

As I’ve begun to focus on the natural cycle of giving and receiving, my life has become more abundant. Nature flows in this cycle naturally. After all, the law of the universe is this law of circulation! The earth gives of its nutrients so the trees and plants can blossom forth. The trees give off oxygen so we can breathe, and we in turn give the trees carbon dioxide and so it goes.

As women, many of us have the tendency to over give too often we find ourselves most comfortable in this space of giving more than receiving. When we are out of balance in giving it’s very easy to become depleted and resentful. Being fully into the giving mode can be a defense against feeling our true emotions and avoiding being alone. By over giving we are sometimes trying to bolster our self esteem

As I have become more aware of the cycle of giving and receiving, I’ve recognized that when I’ve been out of balance, my pride has been in the way. I’ve found myself saying, “Thank you very much. I can do it myself. I don’t need any help.” Being a single mom for many years with 2- and 6-year-old children while working full time taught me how much I could do on my own. I became proud of how fiercely independent and self sufficient I could be.

Things began to shift for me when I began to value myself more. As I began to carve out time to meditate and be in solitude, I learned the value of taking a break and gaining support from meditation, nature, and friends. As I learned how to nurture myself I came more into balance in my giving and receiving.

bigstock-Giving-48698201(1)As I began to learn how to receive I felt myself learning to be okay with feeling vulnerable, and allowing my heart to soften. I learned that when I refused a gift I blocked the flow of abundance in my own life and in the giver’s life. Coming to a place of self acceptance, I can now receive by opening my heart, looking into someone’s eyes, and sincerely saying thank you. I’ve come to understand how generous people can be, and, by receiving from them, I am offering them a gift.

Recently, I became aware that I had become tightfisted about money as I have had to be careful with my budget. When I became aware of this, I saw where I could give more and this opened a flow of abundance in my life. I saw that I could afford to cook my favorite Mexican meal for a group of homeless women. What unexpected joy this brought me as I saw their appreciation and experienced their gratitude.

Giving frequently in small amounts is better than giving infrequently in larger amounts what we want is to allow the natural flow of abundance in our lives be it money, kindness, or love. As we learn to receive and give from our hearts a balance naturally falls into place. In the end, the best givers are the best receivers.

An ancient definition of receiving is welcoming. As we learn to welcome the gifts the universe gives us and we participate in the sharing of those gifts with others, our relationships take on a vibrancy and fulfillment, adding to the richness of being fully alive.

May you bring yourself into balance in the cycle of giving and receiving and experience the abundance that is your natural state.

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