It is that time of year again where we express our love, appreciation, and heartfelt connection to others, Valentine’s Day. But what is it we are giving and what is it the other person really wants? Yes, you can give flowers, cards, gifts, wads of money, jewels, e greetings, or anything else that strikes your fancy. But what will strike hers, or his for that matter? What is needed to find its mark, that of making the other know just how important they are?
Here is the perfect scenario: Buy the book, Women – The Goddesses of Wisdom, don’t wrap it, place it on the dinner table with one red rose on it. Make the dinner if you can cook, buy a fancy dinner if not, or take her out. Place the book and rose on her place setting. Candles are important. Tell her, “This is to express how important you are to me.” Say it with all your heart and soul, but before you say it, feel it. And remember everyday what you’ve said, tell her often.
Now, let’s look at some of the factors that may have been confusing. First, realize that what is needed is not always what is wanted. For example, a woman may want red roses, which to her signifies love. There is nothing wrong with roses, but what is it that the flower’s color signifies? She may say it means, “You love me.” If you give another beautiful color does it mean you don’t? Some women will have that expectation, red or nothing. So if you offered the most beautiful roses you ever saw, say a yellow one with exploding shades of deepening orange color, would that be acceptable? To some women it would not. Obviously, their expectations have overridden sense: it is my way, red, or the highway. Better get red in that case.
But what is it that red really means. Surely the color of a beautiful flower cannot express what you do or don’t feel. So what is it that is another person really deep down inside needs to hear to make them feel important? Surely its not, “I got another dozen red roses.”
I used to call my daughters – bosses. “What do you bosses want to do for dinner, or where would you like to go or do?” Does that mean they had the power to boss me around, or were the final arbiters of what our plans were going to be, or the cost of their desires, or the safety of them? Of course not, what it meant was they were important enough to be heard. Their opinions counted. I may or may not have agreed, and much to their chagrin, still do not always give them what they want. But they know they are important enough to be heard. That is what children really need, but to parents who themselves felt invisible, unimportant, it can be difficult to give. Some parents feel they give up their own importance in doing so. On the contrary, we become more important as we make other important. And while doing so we still get to create and enforce boundaries.
What about the people who desire wealth and power? Is their deepest desire to yield unlimited power and wealth, or could it be something else, something deeper? On the surface it will look like wealth and power, and they will tell you it is. They tell themselves the same thing, and by missing the point they poison themselves. They may dream of monuments erected in their names, or the knowledge that their bloodlines survive, preferably with their name intact. No, it is not power wealth they really crave. As children these power hungry people felt invisible, unheard, unwanted, which all boils down to unimportant. “If I have enough wealth, make a big enough splash, or difference that will show I am important. If not, I fear that I am nothing.” That is one of our biggest fears, nothingness, “I don’t matter,”” I am unimportant;” seemingly like a worker bee to the hive, or an ant to the colony. If I am not the queen, I am nothing! We are not insects; don’t think like one. And don’t compare your “level” of importance to another’s. Accept who you are inherently, your soul’s essence, as important enough. Tell others how important they are to you, if they are.
So, now you can see the importance of importance. If you belief roses are red (and violets are blue), so be it, just let others know how important that color is for you to feel important. But know it is the feeling of importance that you are really looking for.
For the giver, be aware of the intended recipient of your gift, what they need to feel important. Ask if you don’t know. However, it is better if you ask yourself, search your feelings and you will most like know what they need to feel important. REMEMBER, women love attention, because it makes them feel seen, visible, and important. Finding what it takes to create this feeling will warm your heart as you see hers sparkle. It you pick wrong, don’t take it personally, just apologize and tell her you were trying, perhaps in your feeble way to tell her how important she is. Then ask what she needs to know she is important. Perhaps you will learn something. And by asking this question she may realize she already has it, but just had minimized it because she was under the spell of ther own expectations. Being hurt and becoming resentful is of no benefit. Remember, you are inherently important and the recipient is to you, so find a way to communicate this. Tell them how important they are to you. Be courageous enough to be vulnerable and say it. It won’t make you more vulnerable if you already feel that way. You will reap huge rewards in doing so.
Happy Valentine’s Day!