I was born with a cognitive malady. I'm sure I have an -itis. Whatever it is it's terrible because I have to tell people, "I'm not selfish - just simply do not have the cognitive ability to consider someone else's needs other than my own. Yes it's very sad and it's genetic."
I've never been good at giving gifts and for the record, I'm willing to learn. I've seen gifts given, received gifts and attempted to buy things for my family at holidays and birthdays. I'm not hopeless but definitely in the red. It's humbling to think about how much help and support I've been given over the years and I want to reciprocate. Heal the world...
From what I gather, giving gifts involves coming up with an idea of what the other person needs, likes or would be surprised by. Then giving it to them while expecting nothing in return. At the same time, poorly thought out gifts get returned to TJMaxx and gift cards just suck. People are great and will let you off the hook by saying, "It's the thought that counts." Yea but how much does it count if you put no thought into it?
I think the gift givers have some special gift giving ability, cognitive reserves or gifting gene which guides their compass towards the needs and emotions of others. It just doesn't seem like we are all wired that way. I mean it's dog eat dog out there, kill or be killed, right?! Still I see the gift givers out there and they are happy. Yes, genuinely happy and I haven't made the leap. I'm thinking about jumping. Looking for the right opportunity to make the move. Maybe after Q4? Yes, in some vague undetermined future the climate will be better for gift giving then.
Once I was told a gift could be inexpensive and as easily produced as a smile to a stranger. So I'm working on smiling more. Does that get me off the hook? Free smiles are great but not on the subway. Make no eye contact and especially do not smile on the subway. I've tried this. To women it's creepy. To construction workers - dangerous. Also some people are so depressed and shut down that they can't even react to a smile. So for now I'm going to keep practicing at home and try again in the spring.
Some people give gifts to the world. Great scientists, teachers and philosophers give gifts that can change the world. Mother Teresa, Ghandi, the Dalai Lama, these people's names themselves are synonymous with hope, charity, human rights, freedom and healing. Man, I'd like some of that love - but it's a big commitment. Huge. Once you go down that path it's a tightrope to walk. You can't ever fuck up. Really, not at all. You got to rein it in severely. No more benders, no more lying, cheating and general rule breaking. I guess the first is step is boring, real boring.