Slow Holidays: Presence Over Presents
In today’s episode I ask the potentially Grinch-like question of, “Why do we feel so hell-bent on showing our love with stuff?”
And while, as we’ve already discussed in Episode 210, Ben and I still give gifts to our kids and have no real problem in doing so, I do find myself wondering why the act of giving physical goods is now equated with love. There is undoubtedly a lot more at play than our desire to buy, buy, buy, and in this episode we talk about ways we can begin to shift our focus away from purchasing and towards investing in our relationships.
We talk about the emotional connection we feel to the act of giving, and the fact that it can sometimes come down to feelings of guilt or obligation. That if we haven’t been there for a loved one throughout the year, we might feel pressure to give them a whizz-bang gift come Christmas time to show them we really do care.
But if you flip it and reverse it, and start with time, maybe there’s another way. For me, slow living means more time for the people in my life, and investing in relationships.
At a recent event in Tamworth I spoke with a woman who had taken this idea of investing in her relationships to the next level and found it so incredibly inspiring. Ben and I talk about this, as well as the long-lasting impact of prioritising our relationships ahead of the short-lived and often transactional nature of giving physical stuff.
The most common reason we give for wanting to buy gifts is to show love, but there are other ways to show that same love. We can give our presence, our time, our energy to people, and we can choose to turn up for them year-round rather than just once. So Ben and I also talk about setting up rituals with people we love, and even go so far as suggesting a year-round subscription… to you. (No guarantees on whether this will impress people or not though!)
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