The simple act of giving serves many purposes. Gifts bridge long uncrossed gaps. They communicate heartfelt gratitude. They celebrate another year lived beautifully. Best of all, gifts bring the warmth of love and devotion from one heart to another.
Gifts also come in different forms, shapes and sizes as well. But regardless of the purpose and appearance, there is one common binding factor of gifts: the art of gift giving should not follow the “one size fits all” approach.”
But nowadays, we never have time in this hustle and hurry world. Presents have ubiquitously become impersonal and people purchase gifts in a passive or aloof manner. Whether we’re idly shopping for family holiday gifts that the general public would like or going on a mad dash at the last minute for a friend’s birthday, we only further affirm the notion that we’ve lost touch of the beauty in giving. We forget the hows and whys behind giving gifts. We forget that giving is intended to be done with all our heart and spirit, and requiring much thought. It’s easy to lose sight of what really matters and neglect the art of mindful giving.
Mindful giving means slowing down and coming in contact with the generous and sentimental parts of ourselves. Here are a few tips on becoming a mindful gift-giver for all occasions.
Jot down important dates on your planner. Be it birthdays, anniversaries, holidays (e.g. Christmas, Valentine’s Day), or other special events. Planning about when to buy gifts, where to buy gifts, and how long it takes to be shipped to the recipient shows that you value the celebrated occasion and the person enough to avoid merely cramming it out.
Individualize the gift
Create a list of things that make the recipient who he/she is. Write down the recipient’s characteristics, preferences, favorite items and activities, and even your inside jokes. Information like this help you make the item personal and tailor fit to the taste of the individual person. For example, the recipient is sentimental yet prefers practical things, loves coffee and shares an inside joke with you about a ride in the two-decker bus. Knowing these things help greatly in your decision-making and gift-choosing process. All that information in mind, you could give the person a Starbucks Coffee London You Are Here Ceramic Mug like the one you can purchase at Minako Online. This mindfulness of the person’s particular characteristics translates into valuing the depth of your relationship and how well you know the person.
If the recipient is a new colleague whose birthday is coming up and you don’t know what person likes, listen. People love to talk about things they are passionate about. Go the extra mile and make an effort to listen to what interests them so you can still make an individualized gift. Mindfully taking time to remember small details about them and turning them into gifts will undoubtedly move them.
Genuinely consider the recipient
It is a given that we put at least a little thought into the wants of the person we’re finding a gift for, especially after the previous point. However, mindful giving entails going beyond the bare minimum and putting into consideration the recipient’s values, passions, and needs. What could I give that will not only make the person’s day, but really create a difference? Be the one who gives the gift that will make their life better in unexpected ways. Mindfully considering the person to whom you are giving is a wonderful way to express care and deepen connections.
Looking through countless aisles at the mall or browsing through pages after pages of potential gift choices online can easily throw us off and fill our carts with more than what we’re looking for. Shopping mindfully means resisting the urge to splurge on glitzy products we feel they’ll absolutely love. Before adding an item to your cart, ask yourself whether you picked it because you wholeheartedly believe that it reflects the recipient or because your perception was made askew by the aesthetic packaging and ‘sale’ tag.
Immerse yourself in the actual act of giving
Depending on the degree of comfortability in expressing yourself and the manner of which you’d like to do so, this can mean personally wrapping presents with utmost care, timing the giving of the gift with a special moment, or crafting a personalized note/card. You can reference a particular shared memory, an inside joke, or anything, really. Gestures like these help you and the recipient truly savor the moment and feel closer to each other.
Don’t overthink it
Mindful giving doesn’t mean stressfully obsessing over the perfect gift. There are a lot of people in your life you need to give gifts to and we understand that it can sound time-consuming and energy-draining to shop mindfully for each one of them. And that’s okay. No judgment here. Part of giving mindfully is acknowledging our limitations, being honest when we’re uncertain about what gift to give, and still doing our best to be generous anyway.
Give mindfully all-year round
There are key events during the course of the year when giving seems to be expected, if not required. Among such events are of course, birthdays, holidays, relationship milestones, and the like. But giving is not limited to these certain dates or seasons. Begin cultivating a generous spirit all throughout the year. Surprise them, celebrate even the smallest victories, and even get them a gift even when you agreed not to exchange gifts. Mindful giving is all about the gesture and the heart behind it.
And finally, never forget to remind the people you care about of how much you love and appreciate them because sometimes, that is the best gift of all.
~ Nat Sanico