Finding the perfect gift can be a daunting task. The pressure to present an original, meaningful present can feel overwhelming and with so many choices, it's hard to know whether you've bought the right thing.
In our how-to guide on gifting made easy we share practicals tips that will teach you how to give better gifts. Whether you're buying gifts for the holiday season, a birthday party, or a white elephant exchange, we'll show you how to buy presents that show you truly care.
Why do I struggle with gift giving?
Gift-giving can be a struggle for lots of reasons. The pressure to choose a meaningful gift on a limited budget, coupled with the fear of making the wrong choice or not spending enough money all adds to the stress.
The expectations surrounding gift-giving can create a pressure that takes all the fun out of choosing a gift—but it doesn't have to be that way! Adopting a more relaxed approach can make gift-giving easier and less stressful.
How do you make gifting fun?
Gifting should be an enjoyable and memorable moment for both the giver and receiver. Making gift-giving fun involves choosing thoughtful yet unexpected gifts you know they will appreciate. Knowing someone on a deeper level will help guide you towards meaningful gifts they will love to receive.
Encourage open communication about wish lists and look out for subtle hints about items they would like to receive. Add an element of surprise and novelty by considering unique and surprising gifts in keeping with the recipient's interests, hobbies, and preferences.
How to Give Better Gifts
Start a Gift List
The best way to make gift-giving easier and avoid last minute panic shopping is to keep a list of gift ideas. Whenever someone casually drops a hint or mentions something they like, save it to the list. If you come across an item you know someone would like or a useful gift idea, add it to the list.
The earlier you start adding gift ideas to the better. When it finally comes time to buy presents, you'll have a readymade list of gifting ideas to choose from—and you'll know exactly who would love to receive them!
The uncertainty of what gift to buy someone can cause a lot of anxiety and stress. While many people find surprises fun, a lot of people do not—and there's nothing worse than buying a gift or spending time making something that the recipient doesn't like or won't use!
If you can't find any suitable gift guide recommendations and are struggling with gift ideas—just ask! Most people would rather ruin the surprise and know what they are getting than receive a gift they didn't want. What matters is whether the gift will actually be useful.
Set a Budget
Money is a huge source of stress when it comes to buying gifts, especially during the holiday season. To relieve some of the anxiety, set a budget for your gift purchases. Whether it's a per person budget or an overall limit on spending, having a budget will help keep your spending in check and prevent your stress levels from rising.
A lot of stress surrounding gift-giving comes from the fear of spending too little or not buying 'enough.' While the pressure to buy more because one item doesn't feel like "enough" gifts, it's important to remember that one perfect gift is better than a dozen unwanted gifts!
Choose a Theme
One way to ease the pressure of gift-buying is to choose a theme based on the recipient's interests or hobbies. Not only will having a theme make it easier to choose meaningful gifts, it makes the whole gift buying process much more fun too!
Themed gifts could be based on a general idea such as "self care" or "DIY." Or it could be something very specific, like "hot sauce" or "jewellery." Use this theme to guide your gift purchases and the result will be a cohesive selection of meaningful gifts you know the recipient will love!
The time, effort, and creativity invested into creating something by hand makes a gift even more meaningful, and adds a personal touch that mass-produced items lack. Making gifts by hand can often be a more sustainable, budget-friendly option. But not everyone has the skills or time required to make something by hand...
Handmade markets are the best place to shop for meaningful gifts—the next best thing is shopping for them online! By choosing to buy handmade gifts, not only will you be buying a unique gift with meaning. Your purchase will go towards supporting small businesses and independent makers instead of big name brands!
Focus On Consumables and Experiences
Some gifts end up becoming a burden because they take up space or have to be put on display. If it doesn't match the recipient's personal tastes or lifestyle they might feel they're unable to get rid of it and it ends up becoming a source of clutter in their home. Avoid imposing a gift on the receiver that ends up as a source of clutter by focusing on consumable gifts or experiences instead.
Beauty products, cooking ingredients, and homewares like candles, are all great consumable gift ideas. While a museum or art pass, ticket to a local event, or a subscription to a service they already use, are experience gifts that are both useful and thoughtful.
Try Group Gifting
Group gifting is a fantastic solution when the gift you want to buy is more expensive or if you have several people to shop for on a tight budget. Instead of buying gifts for everyone individually group people together and buy them a joint gift instead.
This is a great option for parents, couples, and children. Combined with themed gifts and wish lists, the gift buying process is made easier and less stressful without spending more money! Purchase items that work together in a theme and can be enjoyed by all of the people you're gifting them to.
Buy a Gift Card
If all else fails: buy a gift card! If you know where they like to shop but can't decide on a specific item or feel you don't want to make the decision for them; a gift card takes all the pressure out of the decision-making process.
Although it may feel a little impersonal, letting someone choose a gift for themselves is a better option that picking for them and choosing the wrong thing! Gift cards can be personalised with handwritten notes and sent at a specific time so as not to ruin the surprise.