How hard do you find it to accept a gift with thanks? How often do you treat yourself to something nice, just because? And how often do you put off receiving the things you desire for many different reasons? Women are extremely good at putting off receiving the things they want, wanting to wait instead for various milestones—i.e. “I’ll buy that treat when…”. Here’s how to accept and receive the things you desire because you deserve them!
Cancun and a Louis Vuitton Purse
While vacationing in Cancun a little while back, I decided to buy myself a Louis Vuitton purse. Stepping into the store, admiring all the beautiful bags and finding the one I wanted to buy, I stood at the cash desk making my purchase when I felt the tiniest tinge of guilt and imposter syndrome wash over me. I shouldn’t be spending this kind of money on a purse for myself! Who was I to own an LV bag?!
Of course, these are the thoughts and feelings we all experience when we decide to buy something we want just for the pure pleasure of having it. And so, as I stepped out of the store, my new purchase swinging happily by my side, I committed to acknowledging how I felt. And I reminded myself of how the thoughts of not deserving, or the money being better used elsewhere, were simply not true. I had the choice of thinking those thoughts… or not.
A few steps down the street, the warm glow of the shop lights still shining on me as I walked, I felt my worth in my bones with every step I took. By the time I got back to my hotel room, I felt like a fucking queen. In the past, I would have agonized over making this purchase for weeks or months. In the meantime, I would have filled the shameful void by eating and binge-watching Netflix, although it wouldn’t have made me feel any better. I would also have felt embarrassed to take the bag out to the store, feeling like I was trying to be someone I wasn’t or ashamed of my expensive and unnecessary purchase.
Because this is how we are programmed to feel—that perhaps we don’t deserve to have the things we desire.
Why We Struggle to Receive
There are many reasons why we struggle to accept and receive these things we desire.
#1: We Feel Unworthy
How we feel about ourselves can have a huge impact on our ability to receive. We feel we don’t deserve nice things. We’re not good enough, smart enough, skilled enough, or haven’t worked hard enough. Here’s a gentle reminder for you—those things are simply not true.
#2: Fear of Having to Reciprocate
If someone gifts us with something, in the back of our minds we’re thinking, ‘What are they expecting in return?’ This sense that there’s a hidden agenda can make it difficult to accept a gift for precisely what it is. The last thing you want to feel is indebted to someone else.
#3: Worry About Appearing Selfish
We worry about what others will think if we buy ourselves a nice purse, an expensive piece of jewelry, or whatever other luxury items we want but don’t necessarily need. Will people be thinking about why we’re spending that kind of money on ourselves when we could be spending it on others? There are plenty of other people in need, right?
Ultimately, our inability or reluctance to receive the things we desire comes back to trauma. Our bodies and minds struggle to find the capacity to receive because we don’t feel safe or comfortable enough to do so.
Learning How to Accept and Receive
Let me start by saying that the very fact you’re here and reading this blog post means you’re already starting to receive the things you deserve. By being aware of the issue and recognizing your inability to receive and seek out information and ways to change that, you’re already starting to open yourself up to the possibility.
To continue working on your ability to notice and explore what’s possible, I recommend starting with nervous system work. This will help create safety in your body, allowing you to open yourself up to receive in a safe and positive way.
As you start to notice and recognize the thoughts, feelings and emotions, as you begin to open yourself to receiving the things you desire, I like to remind you to be appreciative of these gifts. Bringing appreciation to something increases its worth, and so it grows to be something even more valuable to us.
And finally, start practicing the art of saying two simple words—thank you. Learning to give thanks without shame, embarrassment, or guilt is an important step in learning how to accept and receive the things you desire. After all, you can still be spiritual AF and have the Louis Vuitton purse. Because ultimately, it’s not really about the bag (or whatever it is you desire; it’s about what it represents!
The truth is as a woman it can feel really hard to receive and invest in ourselves. This is because there are unspoken and spoken rules that to do so is selfish. This is no accident. This is passed down to us transgenerationally and culturally because we are ruled by a patriarchal system. And this oppressive system’s greatest threat is a woman who is in touch with her desire to grow and evolve
To begin dismantling this oppressive belief system that we’ve internalized, join us in Together Women Rising. Here you will find a community of women supporting and rising together. This is a trauma-informed, nervous system-aware space where you will be celebrated for who you are.
Find out more about it and how you can get involved.
If you feel like you might like to speak with me and see how I can help you, I’d love to talk with you. Reach out and book a call. I can’t wait to hear from you.