THE TOP TEN FEATURES OF SKILLED RECEIVERS
1. A receiver knows how to accept a compliment graciously and is genuinely pleased to receive it.
2. A receiver regularly expresses gratitude.
3. A receiver’s attention is on the present rather than dwelling on the past or fretting about the future.
4. A receiver is a good listener.
5. A receiver is observant.
6. A receiver defines a good person as a whole person rather than as someone who consistently places other people’s needs above her own.
7. A receiver does not enable people.
8. A receiver knows when to cease activity.
9. A receiver utilizes data in her environment to help her make decisions.
10. A receiver doesn’t complain.
I have learned a lot about receiving over the last couple of years as the primary caregiver for my mother who passed away last January. (See my post here for more about that.
I’ve learned a lot about giving, too. As anyone who has been a caregiver knows, there is a fine line between emptying one’s energy reserves and knowing when or how to fill them back up. I’ve found it’s a delicate balance walking that edge without going over and depleting myself. I can’t say I succeeded every day, but I approached my caregiving with my two-decade knowledge of receiving and that helped me immeasurably.
I’ve taken some time to reorient myself back into a full-time schedule and I am happy to report that I have three events on my calendar.
The first is in September in Arizona where I am giving a keynote for the Strong Families Arizona Home Visiting conference which is sponsored by the Arizona Department of Health Services. I will be talking about how to prevent burnout when you are in a caregiving role. This particular conference is for home healthcare professionals.
My second event is in Philadelphia in October for the Walnut Club, an organization that serves professional women in the Philadelphia area. The format for this event is an interview. Marla McDermott, the Club’s president will interview me about the topic of receiving, my work over the decades, and I will discuss my two books about receiving. This is a networking event at the Ritz Carlton with food, wine, and stimulating group discussion about receiving and how leaning to receive helps women both in their work life and personal life. Learn more about it here: Walnut Club
The third event is a new Receive and Manifest course. It’s been three years since I offered my five-week tele-course and I am really looking forward to working with a small group of people to help them manifest their goals. I will be doing this as a video conferencing call for the first time. The course starts on October 23rd and runs for five Mondays. You can learn more about it here: Receive Course
You can learn more about these events on my website at Amanda Owen Website If you have a group that would like to schedule a course or workshop, let me know. I am also available for private coaching.
Thanks everybody for your good wishes and support. Stay tuned for more workshops, articles, etc. as I get back into the swing of things, of my life.
Do you feel vulnerable to cultural pressures that tell you to do more, try harder, and keep going when all you want is a nap and a snack?
Multitasking has become such an entrenched feature of modern living that many people think it is natural to be constantly busy. Our society is filled with stress junkies who are mentally frazzled, emotionally fragile, and physically depleted.
What does this have to do with the topic of writing? Creativity thrives in a receptive environment. That’s why people attend writing retreats, write behind closed doors, or seek out other environments that are free from distractions.
Whether you want to connect with your muse, an agent, a publisher, or an audience, learning how to receive as much as you give will help you. The reason for this is that giving and receiving are a natural team. If you invest in only the giving side of this equation, you will end up feeling drained and uninspired.
Energy goes out when you give, help out, and do. Energy comes in when you receive, take in, absorb, listen, or observe to name only a few receptive states.
Here is a simple way to think about this: Activity = energy out. Receptivity = energy in.
If you don’t know how to receive, you don’t get what every writer needs: those who can help you.
Your Best Friends
- Creativity: Your relationship with your muse (inspiration, imagination, ideas, etc.)
- Craft: Your relationship with your teachers (educators, other writers, articles, books, etc.)
- Connections: Your relationship with the people who will bring what you have written to readers (agents, publishers, bloggers, other writers, etc.)
Every relationship is a two-way street. How you give to and receive from the ambassadors of these three important areas will help to determine your success as a writer.
A client recently asked the following question:
Is there a correlation between clutter and being unable to receive? For example my desk ends up cluttered by the end of each week as I get busier and I’m wondering if that would affect my receptive channels? Does clutter stop me from reaching my goals?
Here is my answer:
Clutter clogs. Clutter in your environment or even in your mind prevents energy, ideas, inspiration, feelings, and even people (to name only a few) from getting through to you.
Clutter interferes. Too many belongings in your living space, people who are no longer a match for who you are today, or mental debris that causes you to loop around the same familiar worries and thoughts, can easily lead to stagnation, inertia, and simply feeling stuck.
Clutter distracts. It’s no surprise that many of us fill our living space with objects and fill our days with activities, as we live in a culture that places a high value on accumulation and busyness. Isn’t there always somewhere higher to go, more places and people to see, more things to buy or at least to occupy us? I call this multitasking mayhem.
It’s hard to imagine, but until the mid-1960s people regularly threw their trash on the street and no one thought anything of it. Ashtrays emptied onto the road by drivers waiting at a red light or a bag of fast-food leftovers pitched out of a car traveling on the highway didn’t cause a ruckus or even a raised eyebrow from anyone. These days, people encounter not only raised eyebrows, they also receive a fine.
While no one is going to give you a ticket for not picking up your stuff at home or cleaning out your car, littered environments interfere with daily functioning, state of mind and ultimately affect your decisions.
Have you ever said to yourself: “I can’t hear myself think! There’s too much noise, distraction, stuff to step over, too many ideas, thoughts, projects to complete, people to see, places to go” —that’s your cue to reduce clutter.
When you clear out your physical space, you open up your inner space. That spaciousness calms your nervous system, expands your awareness, and allow ideas and energy to flow toward you.
Here is a lovely quote by William Morris to inspire you to clear out clutter: “Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”
“It’s never crowded in the last mile,” is one of my favorite sayings because it speaks to the importance of tenacity. We admire the individual who never gives up and reaches the finish line. Many of us wish we had more of this trait and did not become discouraged by obstacles or set-backs. We know that to be successful in life, we must be disciplined and persevere.
An equally important, yet little recognized skill, is the act of receiving. When giving your all is not balanced with receiving from others, the inevitable result is to end up exhausted and discouraged, which is not a good frame of mind to be in when you are trying to achieve your goals!
The idea that receiving offers a pathway to the fulfilment of personal and professional goals may not be a concept that has crossed your mind for we have not grown up in a culture that teaches us this valuable skill. We don’t even have a vocabulary for receiving. Has anybody ever heard someone say, “Wow! Look at that person—what a great receiver!”
Even though every giver has a receiver—there is a recipient for every act of giving—the giver is elevated and celebrated in our culture, while the receiver is almost wholly unknown. Most of us are familiar with the maxim, “It is better to give than receive.” Giving is important and should be encouraged. But we can’t be the giver all of the time. Sometimes we are the receiver and how we receive is just as important as how we give.
I believe the lack of understanding about the role of the receiver contributes to the current multitasking epidemic as people try to achieve their aims by piling pile upon task after task. I call it multitasking mayhem.
If you spend one week paying attention to the balance between your giving and receiving, you will be amazed by how often you turn away what people try to give to you. Here are ideas to get you started:
5 Ways to Replenish, Refuel, and Receive
• Accept offers of help. Just like you put gas in the car so it will run and eat food for energy fuel, let people replenish your reserves by giving to you.
• Don’t try to do it all. Ask people to do their fair share at home and at work. Let someone else return the library books, walk the dog, or take care of a work assignment.
• Learn how to say “no.” If you do not honor your boundaries, others won’t either.
• Take time to smell the roses. Take a break and go outside. Breathe deeply, watch the clouds, and listen to the birds.
• Pause, watch, and notice the results of what you set in motion by your activities, and you will learn important information that will help you.
Make a commitment to receive something every day, whether you accept a compliment, welcome an offer of help, or notice something beautiful in your environment. You will not only feel healthier in mind, body and spirit, you will also have a better chance of achieving your personal and professional goals.
To support you with your Receive Practice and help you reach your goals, I am offering a Receive Support Tele-Class
4 pm Pacific, 4 pm Arizona, 5 pm Mountain, 6 pm Central, 7 pm Eastern
It’s 1 1/2 hours and costs $35
This support class includes weekly emails throughout July with receive exercises, inspiration, and answers to your questions.
Details here: RECEIVE SUPPORT
Starts March 17, 2015
Each class is two hours and runs for three Tuesdays in March and the first two Tuesdays in April
3:00 pm Pacific Time, 4 pm Mountain Time, 5 pm Central Time, 6 pm Eastern Time
More information here: Receive
For the past decade I have been conducting classes and workshops applying the concepts of receiving, which includes specific work on formulating and meeting life goals. The basic premise is this:
A huge connection exists between what you are able to receive and what you actually get.
You may have never thought about receiving as healthy and positive, however the results of not knowing how to receive include the following:
• Emotionally you feel unappreciated.
• Physically you feel exhausted.
• Mentally you feel resentful.
• Spiritually you feel depleted.
It’s like you have a gate that only swings one way and all that you give doesn’t bring anything back to you because the gate doesn’t open toward you – only away from you.
Over the years I have witnessed participants of the Receive course get phenomenal results. This is what the course provides:
1. A Receive Workbook Journal to use during the class and throughout the year.
2. Help in clarifying your goals.
3. Exercises that produce extraordinary results.
4. Personal attention from me to help you take your goal from inception to completion.
5. A support group to cheer you on.
6. Manifestation of your goals (see Testimonials)
Is this course appropriate for you? Ask yourself the following questions:
• Is there something you want that you’re not getting?
• Do you even know what you want?
• Do you feel ready to make a significant change in your life?
• Are you tired of having the same old complaints about situations that never change?
• Could you use a support group to help you stay on course?
Let me know by email if you have questions or would like to participate: amanda@AmandaOwen.com
Amanda Owen is the author of The Power of Receiving and Born to Receive. With a background in social work and a twenty-five year practice as a counselor, Amanda has been presenting lectures and workshops since the mid-eighties.
N.Y. Times best-selling author Christiane Northrup, MD calls Amanda’s power-of-receiving philosophy “brilliant, elegant, profound, and enormously practical,” Maria Shriver calls her work “insightful,” and Elaine Shamos, the Director of The Women’s Health Resource Center at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center says “Amanda’s presentation skills are outstanding and, most importantly, her message is life-changing.”
More information here: Receive
You Were Born to Receive: 7 Steps to a Life of Energy, Passion, and Purpose
Are you better at giving than receiving? Do you know how to help others get what they want but don’t know what you want? Join me at Esalen in Big Sur, California where I will work with you to help you achieve your goals, reduce stress, and create greater happiness by tapping into your receptive power.
I’ve been researching the benefits of receiving for two decades and am looking forward to leading you through powerful exercises and guiding you through your own personal journey of transformation. Find out more here: Born to Receive: 7 Steps to a Life of Energy, Passion, and Purpose.