My last post was about the greatest gift you can give yourself. Today I want to talk about gifts you can give others that will cost you nothing but will mean the world to those receiving it. And as with all heartfelt gifts, they will leave you feeling happier, healthier and more fulfilled.
1) Listen. In a world that's become noisy with people finding their voice and using it, there are not enough of us who are prepared to listen with interest, without judgement or the inclination to give advice.
2) Acknowledge. There are few things that are sadder than feeling like you don't matter or that the things you do make no difference or that no one would miss you if you disappeared some day.
3) Meet up. Give the people you care about your precious time and be truly present when you are with them. Loneliness is one of the gravest fallouts of our digitally always connected world. Nothing can ever replace good old fashioned human interaction.
4) Positivity. It's the candle that doesn't burn any less bright for having shared its flame with another. It can light up a darkened room in a gentle way that gives hope. It's not the showy, colourful and throbbing disco light that people often equate with being positive but can be irritating, and draining even to the person emanating it.
5) Smile. Let it come from your heart, light up your face and shine through your eyes. And laugh, preferably with others. A client recently said something quite profound about laughter: "laughter doesn't ask for permission to arrive." It just erupts and fills you with unexpected joy. It's also infectious.
The eagle eyed amongst you will have spotted that the acronym of the five gifts is LAMPS. When you consistently give those gifts to others, especially without expectation of anything in return, it will also light up your own world from within.
Have a wonderful Christmas! And I wish you a 2020 that sees you creating the life you want.