my gift giving philosophy

my gift giving philosophy

bike and flowers

Who doesn’t love to receive gifts?

I might love giving gifts more.

Only a few  people know I would love

to be a personal gift shopper.

I even know what I would call myself.

At this very moment in my life, it seems outlandish

so for now I’ll keep the name close to my heart,

because you never know 😉



I want to share a little about my mindset when

it comes to gift giving.

Before you assume every gift I’ve given has been

stellar and met with rave reviews,

I have most assuredly given my fair share of clunkers.

In fact some of you reading are nodding your heads

in hearty agreement. (Sorry.)

My tips and thoughts are intended to help you learn from

my feeble attempts.

I would guess 90% of those less than favorable

gifts  have been for two reasons:

  1. Lack of time
  2. Trying to hard

My first word of advice is to allow plenty

of lead time before you approach a gift deadline.

Set a phone reminder to alert you to start the decision

process or to put a card in the mail

(words can be a precious timely gift).

Hurry is the enemy of creativity and gift giving.

“It’s the thought that counts”  is a saying which has often

strayed from its original intent to being a verbal way

to let ourselves off the hook when we doubt

our gift efforts.

With some forethought, you can make your gifts count.

There are a multitude of reasons to give a gift.

To me, whether the occasion is celebratory or


I give gifts to show love,

care, concern

and to make people feel known.

The times when I have tried too hard have been occasions

when I have misspent my time trying to impress rather

than remembering the true aim of giving a gift.

Ask yourself this question:

Will this gift make the recipient

feel loved,

cared for,

show my concern


feel known?

Now that you have secured time to think about

your gift,

what’s next?



If you don’t follow any of my tips, obey this one.

I firmly believe most people in our lives will

tell us unknowingly the gifts they would like.

If you take the time to listen to what someone is saying

or the words they seem to repeat, you are miles ahead

in choosing the right gift.

A meaningful gift is all about discovering what

a person needs more than what you think they want.

Hear them loud and clear when they talk about their

passions, dreams and goals.

Lean closer and listen to their hobby chatter.

Do they crave time to recharge or to be pampered?

Have they repeatedly borrowed something of yours?

Now is the perfect time to buy them one

of their own.

Oh and those cookies always getting raves

from a certain someone,

pile them high on a plate and attach the recipe.

When people mention any of their favorite things,

remember by jotting down a note.

Listening helps you become an expert on

a person’s life.

Who doesn’t want to hear those wonderful words,

“How did you know?”

when a present

is unwrapped?


knowing it

is all because of the art of listening well.

Get your Sherlock Holmes on

What happens when you haven’t been

listening and you need a gift pronto?

This is the time to look for clues.

Reread a few newsy emails.

Take a look at their Facebook or Instagram


Reflect on what season in life they are currently


Are they nearing retirement or juggling toddlers?

Approaching an empty nest or returning to the work force?

What area of struggle is present in their lives?

Gifts don’t always have to fit in a box or bag.

Bring a meal to an overwhelmed friend.

Soft athletic socks tied with a ribbon to

someone trying to get back on the fitness trail.

Or a night of free babysitting for a single mom or

a sleep deprived couple.

Ponder what would be meaningful to this person in

this particular time in their life.

If you are still drawing a blank or if

all your sleuthing efforts have failed, you can simply


A gift doesn’t have to be a surprise.

You can always ask the people in your life,

what ways or things would

add value to their lives.

Hopefully they won’t ask for a Maserati but if

they do, this is an opportunity to share a laugh together.

Asking signals to a person you care and are thinking about


This is a great gift by itself.

I believe most people will surprise us by what they really need.

You may discover a wonderful way to give a gift

without panicking or requiring hours walking store aisles.

Often people want our time,

our attention,

our companionship

or even our skills which they lack.

Maybe an elderly relative would love a

weekly phone call or chat over tea.

You might have a flair for decorating and

a friend who could use your expertise.

Let the people in your life surprise you by

being bold enough to ask.



Before I begin the process of thinking,

during the procuring and

after the giving of a gift,

I pray.

I pray I have listened well.

I pray I have looked over the

details of their life and discerned them


I pray I would choose a gift

resembling them and not me.

I pray for God’s creativity and mind

to flow into me so I can truly bless

the receiver.

Then I open my hands and extend

the gift to be claimed.


Happy gift giving during 

this season and beyond.


***p.s. if you are beyond stumped in the
gift department. You will find
my email address is on the right side
of this blog. I would love to brainstorm
with you. Truly.

Go ahead and make my day! Leave a comment!

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