I share an exercise with my new mom groups on giving and receiving appreciation. I have them pair up. One mom states an appreciation to the other mom. The receiving mom is instructed to take in the compliment and just listen. Then the two switch roles and the receiving mom gets a turn to appreciate her partner with her partner now as the receiver and listener.
I love this simple exercise because it allows moms to recognize how much easier it is for them to give than receive.
Maybe, as the receiver, we don’t feel like we deserve that level of praise because we struggle with feeling good enough. Yet if we can just take in one kernel of that goodness and allow it to be absorbed into our heart center, we have increased our heart energy, our self love, our compassion.
We often forget that giving appreciation is much more energizing and rewarding for the giver if the receiver accepts the gift.
In Hilary Hart’s book Body of Wisdom, she reminds us of how to practice receiving.
“Every time you feel exhausted, afraid, creatively stagnant or spiritually uninspired, you are suffering from a lack of receptivity! Your energy system, body, and heart are not in a receiving state. You are not connected, present, or taking in. When you receive, you are full.
… The first step of developing receptivity has to do with the heart chakra and allowing the love that we would willingly outpour to others back into self. When women allow the flow of energy and love into themselves their response is immediate—they feel elation and bliss.” (Elizabeth Frediani)
Receiving in the form of compassion, nurturing and love can be the perfect antidote to anxiety.
This is the work I do with my clients—to help them rediscover what nurtures them and brings them self-compassion and love. And helping others rediscover their gifts fuels me and fills me up to continue the cycle.
What fills you up?