Giving and receiving are two sides of the same coin and I wanted to explore why it may be hard to do one or the other.
Giving is a transfer of energy and takes you outside of yourself. According to Dr. Judith Orloff, giving causes stress hormones like adrenaline and cortisol to decrease and endorphins to increase -- for both the giver and the receiver. It doesn't have to be a big present -- watch for little chances to connect and be of service, e.g. calling a friend you haven’t talked to in a while, putting a few extra dollars in the tip jar at the coffee shop, etc.
How hard is it to accept a compliment, especially without giving one back (which dilutes and deflects it)? It's often more common to be unable to truly receive.
There are a number of reasons why receiving is difficult. One factor is cultural conditioning; giving is generally viewed as praiseworthy. Receiving seems selfish, which has a lot of negative connotations for most of us.
Reiki and Receiving
Sometimes clients ask me what they should do during a session -- if they should think of an affirmation or focus on their breathing, etc. But a Reiki session is truly the perfect time to do nothing and just receive. The session is much more effective the more you let go and and are open to receiving whatever you need in the moment.
Receiving and giving are opposite energies that are inextricably linked, like inhaling and exhaling. Notice if you're better at one than the other this week, and try to strike a balance.