December 27, 2007

Got What You Wanted?

Okay, let's check in. Who got what they wanted for Christmas?

Were you pleased to see just what you wanted under the tree? Or do you even know what you wanted? Did you expect to get it? Did your loved ones have to guess, and did they guess right? Or did you not have anything in particular in mind?

It seems to me how we do Christmas could be symbolic of how we do life.

I was reflecting on how easily kids say what they want. They're not shy about telling us what they want; they make lists well in advance, and they get excited about the process. They also seem to be fairly successful at getting what they want. (I've never seen such ridiculous gift-giving to little people! They have more stuff than I do!)

But what do we adults do? "Ohhh, you don't have to get me anything." "Anything you pick will be fine, I'm sure." "Let's keep it to a minimum this year."

I want to learn to be as particular as my 11 year old friend, Alyson. She's covering all her bases, making sure everyone knows exactly what she wants, down to the color, flavor, size and model number. Anyone who has any vested interest in her gets a copy of her list. In that way, she takes responsibility for her own happiness and sets herself up for big success Christmas morning.

Are we as clear about what we want? Do we make it known to others? Do we expect good things, or are we just glad to get through it, harboring vaguely formed desires that leave us feeling inexplicably dissatisfied when they're unmet?

Although Christmas is over, it's never too late for us to get what we want. Year end is a great time to get more clear about our true desires, and to set ourselves up for success in experiencing them.

How does that work? Let's look to Alyson as an example:

1. She knows what she wants. Nothing wishy-washy from this girl like, "oh, you don't need to get me anything." In fact, you don't even have to ask her. She'll tell you! And she's paid attention all year long as to what would thrill and delight her. She knows how to ask big, and isn't afraid to do so. Gotta admire that.

2. She communicates those desires, and asks anyone who might be able to deliver to do so. She even goes through ads to find the best deals and makes sure the adult shoppers in her life know how easy it is to satisfy her. If she sees someone with one of her items, she'll ask where they got it and pass the info along.

3. She expects to get what she wants. She knows the people in her life love her and want to please her, and she does her chores and follows instructions so she knows the good stuff is coming. It's a given, in Alyson's mind, that she will enjoy her Christmas morning.

4. Best of all, when something isn't quite right, she doesn't throw a fit. She's grateful for what she gets, and that's what makes her such a pleasure to give to.

Some folks might think it's better to be unassuming and undemanding. I have been one of those folks on occasion. But I see Alyson's sense in asking big, being clear, having high expectations, and enjoying.

Who's ready to ask big in 2008? This is our year coming up, if you didn't already know. If ever there was a time to flex our asking and expecting muscle, this is it. Let your Alysons show you how its done if you don't already have this one mastered. : )

Thank you, Alysons of the world, for showing us how to let it be even better than we're used to expecting.


  1. I love this post! Just what I needed as I once again squeeked through Christmas and thought to myself I absolutely hate Christmas. Okay I said it.
    My husband misbehaves, he pouts about his presents and is not very gracious. He said, "what did you buy this for?", when he opened up the upgraded printer I bought him. I know him well enough to know he will be pleased with it but still it is not fun.
    Then he fights with his older son and just about makes him not apart of Christmas.
    Unlike Alyson he is not able to communicate what he wants, expects not to get it, mad at everyone because they didn't meet up to his expectations, ungracious and miserable.
    The horns do recede as the season winds down, but next year I have already claimed. I am spending it with my mother and brother and my two sons unanimously are coming with me!
    By the way I loved my presents! My favourite being the salt lamp and the soft warm shawl scarf - both right on the mark. Next year I am asking for family harmony and gracious hearts, I wonder what size of box that will come in.

    Love Leslie

  2. Ha! "What size box that comes in" ... you crack me up, Leslie!!

    You know this shadow self we often project on others? I wonder if there's something your husband is reflecting to you about you.

    Like, maybe he's got this habit of grumbling about things he should/could be grateful for. Any part of you that does that? It's clear you have a strong capacity for gratitude (yay for salt lamp and shawl!) and are very capable of expressing it. Ha - for all we know, your sweetie is posting his thanks on some other blog while all you get is the grumbles. lol

    That's a funny thought.

    To me, anyway. lol

    I'm also glad to see Christmas come and go, because it feels like we're more able to focus on what's really important now that it's over. Maybe next year I can more easily see Christmas as part of what's important. That's a nice thought for me. :)

    Thanks for posting, girlfriend. I always enjoy hearing from you whether it's here or the good news posts. I'm also looking forward to your new blog this upcoming year!

  3. I deeply appreciate how you always understand Jeannette. Thank you.
    I am just working things out and looking at what I have manifested, agreed to and essentially am being blessed with by my husband's reflections.
    And here is where the warrior work comes in, do I continue groaning about that and stay stuck in the contrast or do I get my Alyson pen out and start looking at what I do want.
    I am so grateful grateful grateful that you always light the pathway for me. That I might be feeling the contrast but as soon as I see you I feel joy and I forget all about the contrast.
    You are a beautiful soul.

    Love Leslie

  4. Pretty cool how that works both ways ... "you are a beautiful soul" is also a reflection of you. I suspect (and intend) you already know that about yourself and see your beautiful self reflected just as easily as the contrasted self. :)

    Much love to you, soul sister!

  5. This is such a wonderful post Jeanette.

    I got almost nothing this Christmas and I really got in touch with not only how I manifested it for myself but how I also have created it for those around me, too. (ouch!) Christmas was still very lovely here, but I am SO in touch with what my loved ones are getting next Christmas!

    I am so grateful for you sharing Alyson's example and for Alyson living so boldly.

    Thanks Jeanette!

  6. LOL ..... and I missed the point again!

    I've started my list!

  7. Besides being incredible touched with Rick's posts I became aware of something. Sometimes those who receive our gifts give us a bigger gift by receiving it.
    How wonderful it is when people allow us to gift them no matter how big or small. There is something powerfully giving when people recieve - isn't that funny.
    We need the balance of giving and receiving and for some of us it requires more courage to receive. So nice that Rick caught onto that and saw he could write a list for the gifts he would like to receive as well as give.
    Here is to taking a second look and starting that list of personal desires.

    Love Leslie

  8. Rick, you're the kind of guy who sees points that the rest of us regularly miss, so I have a feeling you've come up with a couple of additional insights since you posted these comments!

    Kudos to you for being open to the exploration. :)

    And Leslie, I totally agree about those receiving our gifts offer US one in that act!

    Russ and I were on a dog walk the other day when a group of six asked if I'd take their photo. You'd think they gave me a crown or something for the way I was gushing over the privilege of taking their family photo over the Christmas holiday at this most gorgeous place on planet earth. That they trusted ME to capture this moment of reunion for them, I felt it as a true gift.

    I know I'm not alone in enjoying that honor, so it was a good reminder for me to be willing to ask others for favors, because it truly is a gift to be able to give. If it weren't for the receivers, we'd be SOL.

    Now that I think of it, this is very likely why the first time I ever experienced true fulfillment in life was at the end of the first day I volunteered at the pet adoption fair. I never knew anything - let alone scooping litter boxes - could be so satisfying.

    But that's the magic of being in service, isn't it?

    Thanks for the comments, guys!

  9. Your posts always rock - thank you for writing them! :) Happy New Year!

  10. Thanks for reading and checking in, ImprovGal! And happy new year right back atcha. :)

  11. all the bookstores are full of LOA books. Only the writes attract money :))


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