An increasingly popular way to approach the holiday season is the art of mindful gifting. But what does that mean?
What is mindful gifting?We know that mindfulness is about being present and attentive, with our actions being intentional. And these three elements are the core foundation of mindful gifting.
After all, we know that gift-giving can be stressful, but what’s the point of giving someone a present for the sole reason of following customs if it means nothing to you or them?
When you gift mindfully, you take full charge of every step of the process, endeavouring to give gifts with purpose – understanding exactly why you have chosen each gift.
With that said, how can you practice mindful gifting this year?
Six tips on mindful gifting
1. Plan aheadOne of the founding principles of mindfulness is being present. And if we feel unprepared, it can cause us to worry about the future, pulling us away from peace. And an excellent way to ensure you skip the stress this holiday season is to plan ahead. So, grab your trusted journal and get list writing.
Think about all the people you want to give gifts to and what you want to give them. This will stop you running around like a headless chicken on Christmas eve, picking that leftover tat from the shelf, hoping your loved ones like it.
It also gives you the opportunity to consider where your gifts come from and if they are ethically sourced or likely to be used. Because while you want to put a smile on someone’s face, if it’s going to end up in a rubbish heap in the ocean in a few weeks, it’s not mindful of the environment!
2. What is the intention of your gift?
In other words, why do you think this particular person wants this gift? When you think about the kind of person they are and your relationship with each person you are giving a gift to, your present holds a lot more meaning and will be better received when it comes from the heart.
And that doesn’t mean you have to give sentimental or cheesy gifts. But you should aim to cater to who that person is and what they enjoy rather than something that might be cool.
If you are struggling for ideas, ask other people that are also close to them.
3. Gifts don’t have to be objectsConsumerism has us believing that the higher the price, the better the gift, but this isn’t always true. And, as they say, the best things in life are free.
Not to be cliché, but “the best present is your presence.” The simple act of being actively involved and participating in activities with someone can be a tremendous gift, particularly if you are usually busy and unable to do this.
So, whether it's cooking, going for a walk, having a karaoke night, sharing a new experience, or family game night – the best gift you can give is simply being there.
4. Add your stampSure, anyone can buy a present off the shelf, but what makes it unique to your gift recipient?
Putting your personal touch on the presents you gift gives the people you love a truly unique experience made just for them. And the best thing is, you don’t have to be an arts and crafts mastermind to do it!
Here are a few ways you can personalise your gifts:
- Get technology gifts engraved (many companies offer this service free or for a small price when you buy from them).
- Add a heartfelt note with the present, sharing how much that person means to you and why you chose this gift.
- Make the gift from scratch – you could knit, use clay, weave…
- Make a photo collage and get it printed on a canvas
5. It’s not just about the gift
Sure, giving gifts is great, but it’s not the only way to spread joy during the holidays. In fact, when you work on building traditions with your family and friends, the gift of happiness keeps on rolling in!
Traditions allow us to build joyful activities into our lives that foster a feeling of togetherness. Because the time we have together is precious, and it’s up to us to find ways to cherish it.
So, think about the traditions you already have and any new traditions you may want to introduce and commit to them this holiday season.
Maybe it's cooking as a family, decorating the Christmas tree together, game night, film night, wearing your favourite festive PJ’s, or singing carols together.
6. Treat yourself!With all that rushing around hoping to make everyone else’s holidays as enjoyable as possible, you might have forgotten about the most important person – yourself!
Make sure you treat yourself well and take time for yourself during the holidays as well. After all, the more your energy is sapped from running around after everyone else, the less you will be able to be mindful and present with your loved ones.
So, whether it’s taking a mindful bath, going for a walk, or simply sitting down on the sofa to watch your favourite film, carve time out to relax and unwind. It’s the best gift you can give everyone!
Final thoughts on mindful gifting
Mindful gifting is the perfect way to show those around you how much you love and care about them in a meaningful way.
There are many ways to bring mindfulness into your festivities; it’s just up to you to find the best ways to implement them. The list above is a great starting point to bring back the true joy of togetherness this year.
So, take the opportunity to slow down and be present this holiday season!