People who give too much tend to create value for themselves through what they have to offer to the world. The more they offer to the world and the better appreciated that is, the more valuable they feel, the more worthy of love and affection they feel. Unfortunately that carries into their everyday life where overwhelm and exhaustion begin show up, especially when they constantly focus more on other people’s needs while neglecting their own’ Over-givers are very attached to the outcome of their giving. If they’ve offered your gift or service and it’s not well-received or well appreciated, they feel resentful , lonely and unappreciated. At the same time over-givers have a very hard time receiving. They often feel uncomfortable if they can’t offer something in return. Whatever you offer them, they feel the need to reciprocate right away or find something of equal value to offer you in exchange.
What are some symptoms of overgiving?
- Burnt Out. Exhaustion. Extreme Tiredness. Overwhelm.
- Disdain and judgement for people who are needy or acting helpless
- Resistance to receiving- feeling uncomfortable and unworthy of having their needs being made a priority. Feeling obligated to reciprocate or like they “owe” something
- Resentment when assistance, help or thoughtfulness is not reciprocated
What do people get from overgiving?
- Attachment and a Sense of Being Needed/Indispensable: by extreme caregiving, overgivers create a sense of dependency in their partners.
“If I serve you then you will want to keep me around. I want to make myself as indispensable as possible. The more you need me the less likely it is you will leave me.”
- Personal Value- “As an overgiver I create my value by giving. The more I give the more valuable I feel. The less I have to give the more worthless I feel.”
- Superiority and righteousness compared to those who give less: y anticipating needs, taking care of others and giving them what I think they need I get to be a superhero. I am more than those who don’t give.”
What is the real price of overgiving?
- Strained relationships. Disappointments. Expectations. Loneliness. Isolation
- Sets people for being in one sided relationships.
- Sets people up for being emotionally bankrupt because when I only give and am uncomfortable receiving, I will eventually run out of energy and self respect and lash out in resentment and anger.
Causes. Why do we overgive?
- I haven’t found my value so I have to create it by giving too much
- My relationship with myself is shame based so if I focus on you I don’t have to focus on myself
- I don’t know yet that I am already valuable as a human being
- I have become a human doing and think that only by doing am I worthy of love, respect and dignity.
Ways to transition into a healthier relationships dynamic:
- personal self assessment, self observation, self adjusting
- being helpful to self. What would be helpful to you?
I am giving you the privilege of having a well cared for mom. A centered mom. A financially secure mom.”
Obstacles to letting go of overgiving:
- feeling guilty, selfish
- feeling not deserving of rest and care
- worrying that others will be upset and accepting