It’s that time of year when the act of gift giving takes on a heightened sense of meaning.
This year explore what it would mean if you were to give the ‘gift of your Self.’ What exactly does that mean?
The Meriam Webster dictionary says that a ‘gift’ is:
1. a notable capacity, talent, or endowment
2. something voluntarily transferred by one person to another without compensation.
To give of yourself without expecting anything in return can be challenging. To be aware of your notable capacities, talents, and endowments and give from those rich inner resources can be even more of a challenge for people who have never engaged in the deep dive of self-discovery.
Most of us live on the surface of our lives. Our small ‘s’ social self — the one most people see and interact with—buys gifts, attends seasonal functions and celebrations with family and friends, yet seldom shares from the deep inner treasury of its big ‘S’ Self.
To truly give the best of your Self, it’s first necessary to understand who you are at your core and what you uniquely can offer. Unfortunately, for many of us (particularly women), that deep knowing and awareness is not something that we are typically in touch with. Taking a proactive approach to defining who you are and what you want, has often been discouraged. We’re told and taught that thinking of yourself is selfish and self-centred—something we should avoid. Instead of digging deep and embracing Self, we push our ‘stuff’ aside in service of everyone else. Over time, the knowing and recognition we may have had about who we are and what we want at one time gets lost, hidden, or shrouded.
Decide to start shifting how you see yourself. Begin to view yourself as CEO of Self, Inc.—the key decision-maker in directing the development of your ‘Self, Inc.’ entity. Take your capacity to make a positive difference for Self and others to new levels. [Hint: it helps to replace the word ‘Self’ with your first name. For instance, I’m CEO of Cheryl, Inc. You would be CEO of ______, Inc.]
Start to get curious about what you uniquely have to offer. Begin to explore the rich resources of your unique FISC (Facts, Influences, SoulDNA, and inner Characters.) Take charge, and learn how you can use your FISC to improve your Difference Making Quotient—personally and professionally.
Here’s the bottom line. You cannot give to others, what you have not yet given to yourself. Start with giving the gift of your Self to yourself. Learn how to embrace and appreciate all the diverse parts and dimensions of yourself and your FISC. Commit to the life-long journey of Self-development. Then, in a healthier, transformative, and renewing way, engage in the act of ‘gifting your best and most authentic Self’ to yourself and others you meet along the path of life, work, and relationships.