Givers vs Takers

Darryl Bachmeier
Aug 2, 2020

Who are Takers?

Before everything else, we love mulling over things in a one-dimensional way. Takers are not necessarily cutthroat, treacherous living beings. It is better that we more willingly try to focus on reading their psychology. Takers are simply those who tend to receive a lot more than they are willing to give. They believe that to pull through the competition of life; the best strategy is to give less and take more. They deal with reciprocity to their advantage.


Takers would always march to the beat of their drum. In other words, they tend to promote themselves to an extent where they will no more think of anyone else in the scenario. They are often too wrapped up in themselves, and in most cases, they do not even realize that they are crossing all the thresholds of self-love. The renowned psychologist and professor of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania Adam Grant put forward something exact about this after a thorough research. 

Hanker After Credits

Overly self-protective attitude makes them run after credits, even when they have put in minimal effort. Takers prioritize them ahead of anyone or anything else. They do not entirely believe in the give and take rule; their psychology works in a twisted way— “The more I can receive without having to give that much, the more brownie points I score”. 

Are They Selfish?

There is no ‘yes’ or ‘no’ answer to this. When talking about givers and takers, we must keep in mind that this not just about donating money or making yourself available to others. This is more than that. This is also about their approach in daily life interactions with other people; in school, college, university, and even at the workplace. 

Now, Who Are Givers? 

Givers are a rare group of people. They have this irresistible urge to help others out, sometimes even at the price of their damage. Their helping tendency is like a loop, and they burn their bridges to come to the aid of others.  This sparse spectrum of people always feels an obligation to help others; for them, the satisfaction comes from being of someone else’s help. They are other-focused; they instead try not to claim value and provide more without caring much about the return. 

What the Givers do?

Givers are often too reluctant to seek gratitude or even any credits for what they do. They voluntarily give helpful advice, share skills and information, play a therapist’s role, et cetera, all they do without any holds barred!

Do They Get Exploited?

The straight answer is yes. At a workplace or, say, a project, a giver will always find himself at the receiving end of exploitation among a group of people. There has been significant research that says the givers leave no stone unturned to exploit the givers. And guess what, in the field of academia, technical jobs, corporate houses; everywhere, the takers are victorious!  That explains how givers put themselves in jeopardy to uplift others and let everyone walk ahead, leaving them behind. 

Something in Between

So, seemingly, it takes one to become a taker to gain significant success in life. But the truth is there is a middle point in the spectrum of givers and takers. And that group is called matcher. The matcher group is the one most of us eke out an existence in. Matchers are hardcore believers of the ‘give and take’ law of diplomacy. They respond to the favors done by others by reciprocating. Thus, they do not make it all about themselves; at the same time, they keep hold of their priorities. 

What Should You Become? 

The truth of being a strategic giver is, they do get to enjoy a lot of fringe benefits. Albeit a selfless giver is often a loser, a strategic giver is as good as a matcher, rather somewhat better in many instances. So, to keep up with your altruistic approach without letting others exploit you, the best way is to learn to become a strategic giver.  A matcher believes in the ‘tit for tat’ law; they give as good as they get and nothing beyond that. A strategic giver does not stick to that hard and fast rule; they strategically lend their helping hand to others without gambling on their advantages. But at the same time, like an ideal giver, they also expect nothing in return.

Who Wins, Then? 

British-American novelist Frances Hodgson Burnett jotted it down in the most beautiful way that if you are organically a giver, there will be moments when your pocket will be empty but your heart will always be warm and filled to the brim—and that is the ultimate truth of utmost happiness. 


No matter how successful a taker outwardly seems to be, a giver wins in the long run. But a strategic giver wins every leap in the dark because they are selfless too, and smart enough to not expose themselves to danger! So, be a giver but protect your sanity also! 

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