December 20 2005

December 20 2005
February 13, 2006 Ann Weiser Cornell

Focusing and Gift Shopping

Around this time of year many of us buy more gifts for more people than at any other time of year. That’s true for me, anyway. And I love the feeling that comes when I find just the right gift for that person, and see their face light up, or get interested…

I used to be a terrible gift shopper. Something in me would get anxious and I’d buy the first thing remotely suitable, just to have it over with.

This year I’m reflecting on how gift buying feels to me now, and what has changed. I’m more patient. I’m willing to dwell for quite a long time with the feeling of the person, what they like, what their life is like. It isn’t a logical, mental activity; it’s a felt sensing. It’s Focusing, of course.

Trusting the Not-Knowing

I know this Focusing and gift shopping isn’t a logical process. because sometimes I will get something that feels right for a person, and some logical part of me will object: “But you have no idea if she likes puzzles!” (or …”if he likes to cook” etc.)

But if I “dwelled” with the inner sense… (or should that be “dwelt”…?) (wonderful word, “dwelling”!) … it almost always turns out to be one of those perfect presents, where the person gets that look on their face, like I’ve somehow seen into their soul.

And then I begin to wonder if the real gift isn’t that I’ve spent time, that I’ve allowed the knowing and the trusting to come together in me about that person, that I’ve been willing to sit in the place of not-knowing for however long it takes … or at least until the last shopping day!

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