The best present

I want to buy a really nice present for you.

I’m going to choose something for you from this list: NBA League Pass, a new chromatic harmonica, a nylon-string guitar, the Behave book by Robert Sapolsky, a lift ticket, hiking shoes, a maul.

What’s wrong with this list? Those are things I like. Not you.

That’s what giving presents is like without empathy.

It’s Homer Simpson giving Marge a new bowling ball that says ‘Homer’ on it for her birthday.


But we don’t do that do we? We do our best to notice what the people we care about like and are interested. We delight in noticing them. And we love their delight at being seen.

Today you are living a story that you will remember.

You can connect this story of your generosity today to someone else in your life not with you today. It might be someone at work. It might be someone who serves you coffee.

Who do you want your Christmas story to help you bring empathy to?

Merry Christmas!

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One Comment

  1. Barbara Friedman
    Posted December 25, 2017 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    That is a perfect Christmas thought as I examine the gifts I’ve bought and received.
    I do public service for a municipality, so I interact with many people and it is my job to take notice of what people like and want. By law, I cannot accept gifts beyond food or small items. So, it takes me by surprise when a gift during the holidays really delights me. When people recognize my favorite color and their gesture of appreciation is just the perfect fit.

    Thank you!