Is There Such a Thing as Giving Too Much?

giving too much

I apologize for being silent for a while. I have been very busy which has been great but I don’t want to neglect this blog either. But what I wanted to talk about tonight was the topic of giving.

A dear friend of mine and I had a talk recently about that topic. I had always believed that you need to receive in order to keep giving- because if you don’t, you become a martyr and will burn out. She said that is not necessarily the case. You can always give and never burn out, even if your kindness has been taken advantage of (and by the way this lady has been burned over and over again). I was a bit shocked by this. But after explaining what she meant better, I understood.

This is basically what she said. It is a lovely feeling to give and I don’t deny it. It is, but here is the thing. If you give a lot of yourself, you will end up giving yourself to some who will take you for granted or to those who are energy vampires. It happens and there is no way of going around it. Boy I have had my fair share of those and as a result of that, I did stop giving for a while. But here is the thing. If you are going to give, you cannot expect anything back at all. I know that sounds counter-intuitive. But the trick is to give something of yourself that will NOT burn you out and let the receiver do whatever he or she wants with the gift. But if you are planing to sacrifice yourself for someone in anyway, don’t do it. It will only lead to resentment, martyrdom and burn out. Not to mention being a giving person does not mean being someone who does not know his or her boundaries. And this is why so many people feel that if you give, you must receive. No you must give because you WANT to give, not because you FEEL you must- FEELING you must give is pure martyrdom. That is what a lot of people who have been burned have done!

This is what I have learned from this amazing lady. You don’t need to spend money, too much time and effort to give from the heart. Giving a simple piece of helpful information is a gift. If you do that, do you expect back? Do you expect someone who reads or hears your information to give something back to you that will be beneficial? Not at all. That is one example of being giving. And only give your time to someone IF you HAVE the time to do that and do it without expectations. If you are extremely busy, and have reservations of helping someone out if it will cost you your time, don’t! Don’t even consider it, and that is where so many people make that mistake. Therefore, so many people think that if they give of themselves, they are inviting others to walk on them like I once believed.

Takers and those who are non appreciative will take your information too and not intend to give anything back. But in that case will you care? Again not at all. But most people ARE giving in their own way and many of them will give something back to you anyway! So if it does not cost you anything, give something of yourself that can help others because you could be giving someone the best gift even if it seems small to you. And believe me, I am very grateful for my friend who taught me this.

The next thing I will talk about is gratitude and what I have learned about that 🙂

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Written by Miriam

Miriam

Miriam Slozberg is an author, social media consultant and depression advocate. Connect with her on Google+, Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

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One Response to Is There Such a Thing as Giving Too Much?

  1. Tina July 29, 2012 at 4:35 am #

    I admit I have been the victim of an energy suck and been taken advantage of. It is something I’m working on. It kills me sometimes to say “no” but I have to think about me. It’s hurtful to give and give to someone who just expects you’ll help and doesn’t bother to be there for you. It’s sad to be an adult and have such an air of entitlement, you just expect people to fall at your feet, asking what they can do for you, then get angry when they aren’t at your beck and call.

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