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The Gift

Photo by Ivan Jevtic on Unsplash

“Love is a gift which all of us fashion in our own way.”

With Christmas right around the corner, giving gifts is on the mind of many. December is filled with traditional and religious celebrations which are centered around giving to others. Deciding precisely on what that gift should be can be a point of contention as well as extreme frustration. It often turns out to be a dreadful experience rather than something which should be joyfully anticipated.

This time of year would be much simpler for everyone if there were only one item that appeared on everyone’s list. Sort of a “Universal Gift” that would satisfy each person regardless of age, gender, race, or social status. No doubt if any entrepreneur were clever enough to come up with it, that company would become an overnight success. While there have been hundreds of ideas which have sparked close to universal appeal, none have been in the possession of every person on the planet.

What can be even more frustrating is when others ask what you would like for a holiday gift. Answering that question truthfully – and without putting the person in financial peril – may be even more challenging than figuring out what to get others. Again, if only that “Universal Gift” were available it would alleviate an enormous amount of stress.

Is it possible that someday someone will dream up such an idea; one which will be found on every person and in every household on the entire planet? Chances are a product with this much global appeal will never be dreamed up; however, there is one gift which we all can give to ourselves that ought to have this kind of worldwide allure. That “product” is none other than the gift of self love.

Perhaps there is no more overlooked human capability than having self love (which is purposely not hyphenated). It has been given a bad reputation by cultures and religions. Self love does not mean selfish love nor does it demand we put ourselves first. It means that we can accept ourselves as we are; being grateful when good things happen to us and learning to change those things we believe are our shortcomings.

Loving one’s self means getting a greater understanding of who we are because having that kind of confidence allows us to be more accepting and less afraid of others. It does not seek its own interest nor dishonor others. It doesn’t anger easily and never thrills in other’s humiliation or defeat.

Many have been improperly taught that self love is egotistical but if that was the case, it would not be love. For some, loving oneself first is the best way to learn to love others. For there is nothing in the meaning of self love that puts us on a pedestal, looks down on others, or makes us superior to anyone.

There are several ways of showing or articulating love and it is up to each of us as individuals to define and express them. As the year concludes, let us learn to love ourselves more and not for our own advancement, but to celebrate our journey and make this world a better place because of this precious gift we have given ourselves.

My thanks to Ivan Jevtic for the beautiful rose. Find out more about him by clicking here. Happy Holidays and I look forward to your comments.

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