I hear this question from almost every client I work with! Even though the well-intentioned gift does NOT meet the criteria for the “KEEP” pile, the narrative goes something like this… “My Aunt Millie gave it to me!” “It was a gift from Grandmama!” “I can’t get rid of it, even though I hate it, my mom gave it to me!” (You get the idea…)
People have serious guilt about letting go of items that were gifts. And it’s not just at the holidays! It’s a whole category of “stuff” that stays in your space for the wrong reasons!
I am ALL for keeping gifts that make you exquisitely happy, and cause joy to flow from your pores. But any other gift? If you’re keeping it because of guilt? It’s got to go! Really!!!
My further thoughts :) on the subject…
The FIRST GIFT is the choosing. If you are inspired at the time of buying a gift for someone else then the first gift has been given. If it lights you up to purchase a gift, then by all means, DO IT!
The SECOND GIFT is the giving. The moment you send or deliver the gift, the second gift has been given. You’re really sending your love with the extra dollop of something tangible to represent it. YAY!
The THIRD GIFT is the receiving. “My (relative, friend, S.O., husband) thought so much of me that s/he gave me a gift! How lovely, I can feel the love, the intention, the spirit of the gift!” Receiving the love and intention is the third gift.
THEN...when the gift is in your hands, IT IS YOURS!
And, it is completely up to you what you decide to do with it.
IF, and only if, you shiver with delight when you hold whatever has been given to you...then it’s a keeper.
IF it falls into the other category, filled with reasons, rationalizations, and guilt, then you must send it out into the world WITH LOTS OF LOVE for someone else to adore.
Remember! The three gifts (choosing, giving and receiving) have already transpired!!!!!
It is OK for you to return, give, or donate that which does not serve you!
And I know this is not easy, I had a client last summer who had had her 60th birthday party months before...When I went to her house, the dozen or so gag gifts were in a pile on her living room floor, in front of the couch. She was really challenged with what to do about the situation. Well, you can imagine how it went...she was not wanting to keep them, but felt very obligated. We talked, deciding that really, they could go, the fun was over (long over) the party had happened, the laughs had been had, the memories were happy(!!!) and the actual physical gifts were NOT NECESSARY to keep!
So, if you’re hanging onto any “dud” gifts, please consider your own energy, health and happiness when deciding what to keep!
You are not a gift warehouse, and you do not have to save every gift that has been bestowed upon you!
And, I get it, it’s not always easy!
Give me a call if I can help support you to enjoy more space, more energy, and some elbow room for expansion.
Photo Credit: alphaspirit