August 15, 2015

How to Receive Love with Grace

How to Receive Love with Grace

When my friends decided to throw me a birthday party this year, I felt incredibly blessed. I mean, someone going out of their way to plan a special evening for you is a serious act of love. I knew this to be true intellectually. But I quickly noticed that I wasn’t experiencing much emotion about it.

If you’ve been following me for a while, you know that I’m really passionate about self-love (I’ve been called a self-love guru for pete’s sake!), and I’ve made huge strides in loving myself more and more over the years. But if I’m being really honest with myself (and you), the thought of someone loving me and taking care of me is uncomfortable.

The morning after my birthday party, I woke up feeling extremely guilty. It made me realize I still have work to do–that there are barriers present to my own self-love. Of course, I could go through all of the reasons why I have issues with receiving. But instead, I decided to practice receiving so that I can transform this area of my life instead of analyzing it.

Now, when someone gives me a compliment, I’m learning to practice simply saying thank you, and to catch myself anytime I want to deflect, make a joke, or tell the person “no way, that’s not true.”

I’m beginning to allow people to show up for me and do nice things for me. Recently, my friend Stefan invited me over for breakfast. If I wasn’t being conscious, I would have easily told him “no, it’s totally fine. I’ll bring us breakfast.” But instead I let him make me a delicious batch of gluten-free chocolate chip pancakes. And it was so worth it!

Slowly (very slowly) but surely, things are shifting and I’m getting used to this whole receiving love thing. I’ve been making a conscious effort to be gentle with myself in the process, forgiving myself often, and building my awareness around those old patterns. It’s been an incredibly humbling experience and one I wanted to share. Because I’m sure you can relate.

I’d love to hear what your experience has been with receiving–whether it’s compliments, affection, or recognition. What do you usually do to deflect other people’s love or kind words? Please share your experiences in the comments below so that we can all benefit from your unique point of view.

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  • Nagina


    Thank you so much for sharing this! I feel like you do/did, where I feel like I have to bring things, and feel guilty or not excited when people close to me do things for me. I’ve been realizing I need to let love in, because it’s all around me, but I have to learn how to feel it. Being aware of it is so helpful, and just pausing and giving myself the space to let the love sink in is something else I’m trying to do. I still have a lot of work to do, but it’s great to know that it’s possible.

    Thank you so much for sharing such a great and relatable post.


    • Nitika

      This is so beautiful Nagina, thank you for sharing this! The awareness is everything, I literally had no idea this was even a THING until I felt the breakdown this past year. So glad this post was helpful + sending lots of love your way xoxo

  • Laura

    Hi Nitika you are correct we are rise to give, give more and then a little bite more. Since last year it has been very hard for me because my son is in a Rehab Clinic and this year I split from my husband (3) because he let his life go out of control. Both are ok ( son and husband) and they have been improving. Any way it’s a heart broken for me because I’m by myself, in a country that’s not mine and alone. I know that the only thing I can do for them is to pray that God guide them in the ccorrect direction and give them time and space. The problem is that I’m a controller and want to fix everything.
    You write the other day about a bubble of love, what I find is that I was missing the patience that I give to them
    For myself. Sometime I receive nice surprises from my son and husband and I don’t know how to react, because I’m always thinking, why your giving me this, what you do?

    I have to accept that they are just thankful for the space I give them and stop thinking that there is a bad reason behind.
    I rember your bubble of love and I jump inside again


    • Nitika

      Oh I just love this Laura – so so so beautiful. The fact that you are seeing that you question your son and your husband when they are kind, and that you want to turn that story around, that’s so beautiful! It’s hard to see our patterns sometimes but you’re doing such a beautiful job. Keep it up love! xoxo

  • Michele Morales

    OMG, I am SO guilty of this. Receiving love is a huge issue for me and this post is just another in your face way of saying, Michele – you need to work on this. I’d much rather give than receive, which is good, but when you consistently have a problem with receiving gifts, or compliments or gestures, you have to really look at yourself and say, what’s up with that? Thanks Nitika for the tips!!! I’ll practice just accepting – be it compliments or gifts or favors, without saying, “that’s okay”, or “you don’t have to do that” or rolling my eyes. Love should never be one-sided. It always has to go both ways for you to experience the beauty of it to its fullest.

    • Nitika

      Exactly!! It’s such a powerful and beautiful lesson. I am still working on the receiving compliments one – it’s a hard one for me but I feel like we are both on the right track 😉 Lots of love xoxo

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