When we constantly think about what we're going to get, we never feel fulfilled. But when we focus on what we can give, we immediately feel empowered.
One explanation for this is because when we give, we are in complete control. And as humans we like to be in control. We decide what to give, when to give, and why to give.
On the other hand, when we get, we have little to no control over what we receive. Therefore, always thinking about the next thing we're going to get is a recipe for unhappiness.
I will confess that this is perhaps on of my greatest weaknesses, but also an area that I'm focusing on a lot, and trying to improve.
I often catch myself focusing on what people are giving me. However, the difference between my current and former self is that I am now aware of the fact that I focus on this. Just having awareness is enough for me to ask myself, what could I give in this moment?
I've found that I get the greatest joy when I give just to see someone happy. The smile on their face, or the laughter, or the tears, is something that fills me up. It fills my substance bucket.
When I get things, it's like a quick sugar fix, a quick shot of dopamine, and then I'm immediately thinking about what's next. Getting fills my style bucket.
I don't judge myself for this, because I know it's just a habit I've developed over the years, and I'm fully capable of changing it. I'm grateful that I've gained the awareness to recognize this in myself, and I'm happy with my progress on switching my focus to what I can give rather than get.
Have you ever struggled with this?
Live with substance!