Life Lessons

Gift Giving

OK, It's the Christmas Season, which brings me to one of the most important philosophies in life...if you want to be successful, don't accumulate junk. Think about it...how many times have you associated a pack rat with success? Probably never. When you envision someone who saves everything, what do you think of? Probably some dirty old person with a cluttered house. If they're really successful, they own a shop full of junk that they try to pawn off on other people.

Now think of a successful person's home...Bill Gates, or whoever. You probably imagine clean, clutterfree hallways, neatly organized shelves, etc. Is this just a coincidence? Of course not. There are many reasons why successful people lead uncluttered lives.

A lack of clutter helps you feel open and available to new opportunities and new ideas. Try cleaning...have you ever noticed how good you feel when you've gone on a cleaning kick? ...how much more energy you have? When you don't have a lot of things around you distracting your attention, you can focus on the important things, and get more done.

One reason is energy. When you have a lot of junk in your house or anywhere around you (think workspace) you don't leave room for energy to flow in. It's like a beaverdam in a river. I saw a great motivational speaker on TV once who was urging her viewers to go through their house and pick 30 things to get rid of immediately. Then pick 30 more things to put in boxes. After 3 months, anything that you haven't pulled back out of those boxes should also leave. (Or at least put it in off-site storage, if it's something you don't use, but can't get rid of.)

So this season, think about both giving and recieving. When you give something to someone, are you giving them something they really want and will use, or are you going to K-Mart at the last minute and grabbing something cheap that will seem nice? If you're doing the latter, do the person a favor and make a donation in their name. Then everyone wins. They don't get cluttered with more junk they feel obligated to keep, and you both feel good for helping someone else. Plus, that other person gets helped.

As far as receiving goes, make a commitment to telling people exactly what you want. Publish a list and send it to all your friends and family. Yes, it might seem selfish and rude to our American manners, but I can bet those people will really appreciate it, especially if they're stumped about what to get you. And if somebody gives you something you don't really want, don't hold onto it. Give it to charity. Maybe there is someone out there who really does need it. After all, you're just going to shove it in a closet for a year or two until the guilt relents enough so that you can give it away anyway.

Do us all a favor this year...give smart, and recieve smart. Don't get hurt feelings if you don't get what you want, especially if you didn't ask for it, and don't be offended if someone gives your gift to someone else. Be thankful that we're still alive, and God-willing no more buildings will go down.

Peace and blessings to you.