Speech Smarts

What gives?

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Is it a box, with colored paper, ribbons and bows?

Is it a thought, thoughtfulness and timeliness?

Is it the gift inside the box or inside you?

Your gifts are the intentions of your soul made whole.  A gift needs to be given.  Transforming a thing into something special begins by offering something of value.  You can only give what you have.  So, what’s on your gifted list? You mean gift list, right? No, I am referring to the values and talents within you. Often, we cannot see our own gifts.  We see through our talents and values and so it is difficult to look at them.    What seems normal and natural for you to do may be extraordinarily difficult for someone else.  So before you kill another sweet scented pine tree, duct tape some shiny paper to another cardboard box, or stress about who you might have forgotten to buy a gift for, let’s make a gifted list instead of a gift list.

The thought behind a gifted list is a list of values and talents you already have. Basically, if you can put it in a box or wrap it in paper, it is a trinket not a treasure and it does not make the list. What is the difference between a trinket and a treasure?

Years ago, Philip Canon, an erudite venture capitalist, gave me a thoughtful gift.  He said, “If I give you a $1…  You have one more $1 and I have one less.  If I give you an idea, you get the idea and I get to keep the idea.  Together we can refine this idea, apply this idea and share this idea.  Ideas enrich your mind, fulfill your heart and fill your pocket.”  A dollar is worth about a dollar. Paradoxically, ideas become more valuable the more you give them away.

If your list is short or if you can’t find your gifts, you need to go shopping, not at the mall but in the store of your soul.  To grow your gifted list, you could add listening.  Then, you might add awareness or attention.  How about some compassion or consideration?  Can you find a little patience and some perspective as well?  It seems to me, the most valuable gifts you can share are the ones that help you grow, as you give them away.

What! Do you even know how many gifts I still have to buy?  I’m a stressed out a secret Santa.  I don’t have time to think, let alone scribble down some soulful insights.  Well Santa, here’s a secret.  The first thing you can put on your gifted list is time.  Maybe you already know that kids spell love T-I-M-E.  Seriously, do even remember any of the junk you unwrapped when you were a kid?  I don’t.  I remember the moments. Sometimes, stressfully searching for the perfect tschotske to give, others in frenzied anticipation of the things I would get, but mostly, in moments shared between family and friends.    Each of us is given the same amount of time each day.  Time is a treasure often spent on trifles.  Your time turns into a treasure when you take care to transform minutes into moments.

Ah, excuse me, you don’t get more time when you give your time.  True enough; however, we experience our life in moments, not minutes.  The more moments you have, the richer you are and the more you enrich others.  A minute is just sixty seconds.  Moments can be treasured for a lifetime.  A gifted life is wrapped in thoughtfulness, bound by timeliness and adorned with treasured moments.

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About the Author:

David Nemitz has designed and delivered over 10,000 sales presentations, professional development programs and executive coaching sessions for corporations and governmental organizations such as the US State Department, The French Consulate, and American Express. When he is not helping others define and refine their strengths, you can find him watching the sun set over The Magic City or strolling through The City of Light where he lives with his wife Ninette.