Anxiety Free Gift Giving

Here's another Winner's Circle Network with Lou Tice - 11/24/10 - "Anxiety-Free Gift-Giving"

I hope that you have given some thought to those pet peeves that drive you crazy during the holidays, and have created your own interventions to alleviate the stress and tension. In fact, when you have a moment, I'd love to hear about some of them. We are a community, you and I, and I'd like to pass along your good ideas!

One of the biggest anxiety-producing events of any holiday season is Shopping For Gifts. "What am I gonna get.?" "How am I gonna find.?" "The store is only open when?!?!" and the ever popular, "What if they already have.?" All in search of the impossible - the "perfect" gift.

I hear, "I don't have enough money," or "There just isn't enough time," even with the power of internet ordering, I still hear, "It won't get here in time." And then there is the ever-popular, "What if?" usually ending in "it's not good enough."

I watch people put tremendous pressure on themselves, agonizing over "the gift list." Little kids are easy, because a lot of them have their "Dear Santa" letters ready in October. And have you noticed that, by and large, little children don't agonize over what to give Mom and Dad. They know what they want to give, and as parents, I know that our hearts have melted over the precious hand-print in clay, the glittered candles, or the handmade card that says, "I Love You, Mommy and Daddy."

Perhaps it is time to remind ourselves of our "littler" selves. Put aside the expectations and the stress, and remember that it is the time devoted, the intentions and the love involved that make any gift truly special. When all is said and done, it won't be the gift that is remembered. It will be those moments of true connection with loved ones that live in our hearts and minds forever.

Lou Tice
The Pacific Institute