How Your Gifts Come Back

a close up shot of a person giving a gift to another person


I recently worked with family members to clean out two households. One last year was for my mother who has dementia and is in assisted living. The other was for my sister who passed away in February. It started me thinking about the weirdness of getting gifts back when I had loving chosen them for the people I love.

The gifts I am receiving now – from myself through a circuitous route – are little things like holiday-themed pins and earrings, artwork I had commissioned for my sisters (I had one made for each of us, now I have two), and pieces of clothing. What an uncomfortable feeling! And yet, what a glorious gift. These re-gifts offer new opportunities for me to carry these people with me. I am learning to shake off the strange feeling and embrace the joy this brings.

In the midst of this curious situation, my clients are experiencing a return of gifts they have given. Gifts of mentoring, kindnesses they have shown, and sometimes advice they have given. In all of these cases, they expected nothing in return. Yet, in a few years, sharing time and experiences led to gaining a new client – an unintended result. They feel a bit uncomfortable about reaping these rewards, because their intention was purely to help and support someone.

Likewise, as a coach, one of the greatest gifts I receive is when I hear a client incorporate my words into their thought process and behavior. Things like, “I realized that my negative thoughts were draining my energy,” or , “After I reconnected with more of the people in my network, I found that they were excited to hear from me.” My words often come back to me.

I am not offering action items with today’s post beyond this – think about and notice all of the gifts you give. Here is a list of a few:

  • Your time
  • Listening
  • Advice
  • Mentoring
  • Strategies
  • Ideas

What kinds of gifts have you given? How do you feel when they come back to you?

For more information contact Mary Balistreri, The Mindful Business Coach at

Published by Mary Balistreri

Mary Balistreri offers a variety of coaching and professional development services to individuals and organizations focused on harnessing strengths to develop more business. Mary’s approach is goal driven, focusing on measurable results and developing actionable plans to move past obstacles that hold individuals, teams, and organizations back from executing on the plan. Mary offers expertise in business development, team building, and leadership development coupled with strategies to improve conversational and emotional intelligence to support clients moving toward their goals and aspirations.

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