In this week’s Success Newsletter, I would like to explore reasons for giving – do you only give to get something back?
First a quick update:
**** Will your relationship survive children? – A new survey by parenting website Yano.co.uk reveals the many ways that children impact a relationship and marriage – frustration, loneliness, arguments, less mutual attraction, less intimacy. Read the article with my quotes in the Daily Telegraph: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/relationships/9372210/New-parents-have-less-sex-and-more-rows-study-finds.html And the Yano article with more of my insights: http://yano.co.uk/2012/07/will-your-relationship-survive-children/ Also read my article about why you need to put marriage first ahead of the children: http://patrickwanis.com/blog/marriage-first-before-children-and-everything-else/
**** Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes’ divorce – an example of clashing values over children. It’s one of the major causes of arguments in marriages – how to raise the children. Read my article about Tom Cruise as the example of the need for a marriage to consist of shared values and compatibility in personalities and religious beliefs: http://patrickwanis.com/blog/tom-cruise-holmes-divorce-clashing-values-children/
Now, let’s talk about giving – do you only give to get something back?
Here is an excerpt from my book “The Greatest Money-Making Secret of All Time”:
Why do you give? Do you give only to get back? In other words, are you giving money, love, affection expecting to get the same back, demanding to get the same back?
From my story above, it is evident that I was giving to get attention, love and recognition but not to be paid. And I was doing the same in personal relationships. I was playing the martyr, giving of myself but not receiving anything in return. Now, I am not saying we only give to get back. We may give knowing it will come back but not expecting or demanding it to come back. The difference is subtle but the result is huge.
In my audio book, “Get the man you WANT!” http://patrickwanis.com/GetTheManYouWant.asp, I explain that “Every relationship begins with you. If you don’t love yourself, then the love you give is needy love, given in an attempt to fill an inner emptiness.” In fact, when you are giving from a place of neediness, it is the same thing as you taking.
That was what I was doing in my relationships. I was not giving out of joy or kindness. I was giving out of desperation. I desperately wanted to be loved. When we give out of desperation, searching for validation, we kill all the joy of giving, it becomes a burden and we resent it and the person who is receiving it.
In other words, the emotion and the intention behind the giving are paramount. Which emotions do you emit when you give? What do you believe will happen when you give? Do you feel as if you are losing something every time you give?
For most of us, the obstacle or wall that holds us back is that we are so caught up in ourselves we cease focusing on contributing to others. Once we become so selfish, we fall into depression, desperation, frustration and helplessness. After all, we feel useless because we are not impacting anyone. We feel worthless because we begin to wonder if anyone needs us, or if we are making a difference at all? The more we take the more we feel completely separated and isolated. But when we give from our heart, without expecting anything in return, giving purely out of love, then we feel safe, strong and connected.
I would like to relate two vastly different but true stories that illustrate how the emotion behind the giving makes all the difference not only to the way the giver feels about himself but to his bank account!
The thief that couldn’t get enough
Peter had a horrible childhood. He was molested. His father was abusive. His mother paid little attention to him. His mother made many emotional demands on him and his father even took money from him. Peter grew up in a very strict religion. He was often condemned and criticized and taught that money is the root of all evil and that fun was a bad thing. There were no exchanges of gifts on Christmas and no one celebrated when his birthday came around. In his eyes, the world was cold and harsh. It had taken so much from him and given so little. Peter believed his mother and father didn’t love him, he couldn’t trust the world, and no one would take care of him. Quickly Peter became angry, feeling the world owed him a living.
He felt empty inside, almost like a bottomless dry well. Thus, he began to try to fill the well with all the things he believed he had been deprived of. He began to shoplift and steal. He stole everything he could see, most things he needed and some things he didn’t need. He became obsessed and addicted to shoplifting, sometimes even stealing to give to the poor.
In his mind, there would only be enough for him if he took it for himself. And so, he shoplifted and shoplifted but it never was enough. He just couldn’t seem to fill the inner emptiness or ease his anger. Even his desire to balance the world by taking from it and giving it to the poor and needy just didn’t seem to satisfy him.
One day Peter awoke to find he was addicted to stealing. The shoplifting and his anger and desperation had taken control of him. Finally, he chose to face his anger, his shame, his pain and all of his blame. He chose to stop being a victim and instead chose to forgive his parents, himself and the world.
Suddenly, Peter saw the world as a big place. He awoke to see that his giving had never been out of love, but out of anger and that was all that filled him –anger. When he finally released the pain, suffering and judgment, he was set free. Peter could now see the world filled with light and that he did deserve to receive love, money, joy and success.
- from my book “The Greatest Money-Making Secret of All Time”:
In the context of a relationship, giving only to get something back also leads to controlling behavior. When we give conditionally, from a place of insecurity and fear, we destroy the love and relationship.
We often speak of seeking and longing to experience unconditional love, to find someone that will love us regardless, no matter what; someone that will love us without trying to control us and without demanding immediate reciprocation. But how do we love? How do we express our love? Are we loving out of obligation and under duress or are we loving with passion and an open heart?
What is the intention behind the way you love?
Do you love in order to receive the blessing and joy that giving bestows upon you?
Unconditional love amidst human imperfection is perhaps unattainable but we can always strive to be more loving, to give freely and openly. If you seek more love in your life, begin now by giving it away. Give away the love that you want and you will find, without expecting it, that it will also be demonstrated to you.
Also read my article “The twelve most important words you will speak”
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I wish you the best and remind you “Believe in yourself -You deserve the best!”
Patrick Wanis Ph.D.
Celebrity Life Coach, Human Behavior & Relationship Expert & SRTT Therapist