You Give and Give… But Are You Willing To Receive?

As you know, it’s my mantra that we ought to give and add value in business without ever expecting to receive anything in return.  Well, that is still true.  But if you are in a sales or a business growth role, while you shouldn’t “expect” anything in return, you MUST receive something in return. Otherwise, among other things, you aren’t receiving sales!

Have you ever noticed how much baggage we carry about the idea of receiving?  Whether it is an offer from guests to help clear the dinner dishes or a free lunch from a business colleague, everywhere we look, we can see instances where people aren’t willing to receive what others want to give. Perhaps if we look in the mirror, we will notice instances where even we are not willing to receive. Have you ever rejected a compliment?  “Oh this old dress?  I’ve had it for years” she said as she waved her hand in dismissal. This is a perfect instance in which we can graciously say “thank you” and receive the compliment given.

If you have ever shunned a compliment, you might share the mentality that receiving is “bad” without even knowing it  When someone tries to give to us, we might feel greedy, selfish and self-centered if we willingly take from them.  But if everyone is giving and no one is receiving or taking, then to whom do we actually have to give?  Are you confused yet?

You see, there has to be a natural balance of giving and receiving for both the giver and the receiver to benefit.  It’s a wonderful cycle in which there are enough receivers for those who are giving.

Somewhere, we’ve bought into this belief that only giving is good and receiving is bad. But to grow and thrive in a business, we must expand our willingness to receive. Otherwise, we aren’t really participating in the flow.  When speaking about the Law of Receptivity in his international best-selling book The Go-Giver, Bob Burg states: “It’s not better to give than to receive. It’s insane to try to give and not receive.”

When we allow ourselves to receive, what we are really doing is accepting more for our lives and businesses. We are allowing another person the opportunity to give.

Begin to look around you for the many opportunities you have to receive from others, whether someone offers you a free session, gift certificate, a compliment or simply their time.  Even the simplest gifts are tied into receiving and, regardless of size, they all affect your bottom line too. If you aren’t receiving the small things, what else are you not receiving?  New clients, additional revenue, referrals, the lottery jackpot?

Starting this month, I encourage you to be aware of instances in which you are apprehensive about accepting or in which you downright rejecting the smallest gifts others want to give you. Once you are aware of that you are rejecting, you can turn this into fully receiving. How great would it be to readily receive everything?  Help from a friend or stranger, a compliment from a colleague, a free lunch, and especially a new, full-paying client (without feeling the need to offer a discount).

If we aren’t willing to be an active participant in the flow of giving and receiving, we are hurting our business and those around us as well.  Bob Burg says “The key to effective giving is to stay open to receiving.”  So my challenge to you is to intentionally and graciously receive the gifts others offer.  You might be surprised to see all the goodness that comes your way. More than you could ever imagine.

© 2013 CERTUS Professional Network / Behind The Moon, Inc.


Feel free to share this article in its entirety and include Sabrina Risley’s Bio information below along with live link back to this blog post.  Thank you.

Sabrina Risley founded CERTUS Professional Network™  (formerly Behind The Moon, Inc.®) in 2003, a Colorado-based professional community and networking organization that sets itself apart with its motto “grow your business by helping others grow theirs.” CERTUS offers several monthly networking events along Colorado’s Front Range, attracting professionals who network to give rather than get. You will find Sabrina speaking to audiences about effective networking techniques, the power of partnerships, and principles of service and giving as a means to grow a business. To receiving Sabrina’s free report, Networking For Success , please visit

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Sabrina Risley

Sabrina Risley is a master connector. She’s been hosting live networking events since 2004 and has welcomed 20,000+ professionals to those events. She shares her observations, insights and tips of how the top 2% of effective and magnetic networkers build their businesses. She also shares what NOT to do when networking. Get her complimentary e-book: Strategic Networking for Success.
Sabrina Risley

1 thought on “You Give and Give… But Are You Willing To Receive?”

  1. Pingback: 4 Tips When You Are Giving and Not Receiving Anything in Return »

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