The Gift of You
This holiday season, like every single one I can remember, has been accompanied by a marketing frenzy – TV and radio ads, emails from every vendor I’ve ever purchased anything from in my life, and social media campaigns filling my feeds.
I'll be honest; I enjoy shopping...sometimes. But searching for the ideal gifts – which can be elusive – is often stressful and exhausting, not to mention financially burdensome.
In the midst of all the chaos and consumerism, there is, however, an invaluable gift right at your fingertips, one that you can give over and over again, creating joy and happiness every time. It's the Gift of You.
I can see you shaking your head, thinking, "Sounds a bit trite – 'the gift of you.'" But hear me out. The Gift of You is something no one else can give, making it unique and priceless.
The Gift of You can take the form of something you create or simply spending quality time with someone, offering your presence, and sharing your care.
Time is a huge gift. We all value our own time, so when someone shares theirs, it's special. Because you know they made a choice to spend their time with you.
Being present and fully engaged demonstrates how much you value the other person. The warmth of friendship and the comfort of companionship are indeed priceless.
My grandmother was a great cook. Her kitchen on the farm was an oasis filled with wonderful smells and delicious things to eat. During the holidays, she would make special treats for us. We all looked forward with excitement to see what delightful things would appear. And while we thoroughly enjoyed the things she made, my best memories are of the time spent in the kitchen with her while she was preparing those things.
Several happiness research studies have shown people find more lasting happiness in experiences and the associated memories than with tangible things. Experiences don't have to be huge or cost money. Little things really do mean a lot.
For example, a few years ago, our then-eight-year-old granddaughter gave her parents the perfect example of a small, very special experience gift. We were all gathered in the living room on Christmas morning, opening presents one person at a time so we could all ooh and ahh. Towards the end of the presents, our granddaughter handed a large Christmas bag to her parents. Sifting through the tissue paper, our daughter found the gift – a small piece of cardboard. On it, written in colored pencil, were the words, "My gift to you is all my love." Perfection.
Material possessions may bring temporary happiness, but the warmth and connection that result from sharing your time, attention, and love are lasting and immeasurable.
In the end, the gift of yourself is the one that will be treasured above all others. So, this holiday season, let the warmth of your presence and the sincerity of your care be the greatest gifts of all.
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About Lynda-Ross Vega
Lynda-Ross Vega is a partner at Vega Behavioral Consulting, Ltd. She specializes in helping corporate leaders, entrepreneurs, and individuals with interpersonal communications, team dynamics, personal development, and navigating change. Lynda-Ross is co-creator of Perceptual Style Theory, a revolutionary behavioral psychology theory and assessment system that teaches people how to unleash their natural strengths and build the life and career they dream of. For free information on how to succeed in business and in life doing more of what you do best, visit https://www.YourTalentAdvantage.com.
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