No matter the occasion, gift giving can get stressful. And finding the perfect gift is truly an art form. The perfect present reflects the thought, time, cost and effort of the gift giver, while being meaningful to the one who receives it.
However, there is a way to make the process of gift giving much easier. I’ve had to learn the hard way how embarrassing it is to give a crappy gift, especially when receiving something wonderful in return. Or even worse, forgetting to give a gift altogether… In light of my past blunders in gift giving, I’ve formed a system to give the perfect gift every time. That doesn’t necessarily mean that I spend a lot of money on gifts. I now prefer giving meaningful gifts that have a high probability of being remembered and subsequently appreciated.
In general, you can’t go wrong with:
- Gifts that provide an experience that you know someone will enjoy
- A gift that supports someone’s lifestyle or improves their daily comfort
- A gift that you spent considerable time and effort creating
But within these categories there’s an endless range of gift giving possibilities. So I’ve created the infographic below to demonstrate some examples of awesome gifts that are sure to be remembered and highly appreciated.
The Art of Gift Giving
Experience gifts have great perks. Not only can you, the gift giver, often enjoy the experience as well but experience gifts have the added benefit of creating long lasting memories.
- Take an excursion: A day trip doing something special like sailing or taking a local food and wine tour. Excursions should be adventurous but fall in line with the gift receiver’s interests and taste.
- Fine Dining: Taking someone to a fancy dinner is one of my favorite ways to say, “thank you.”
- Lessons: Maybe your loved one has shown interest in a new activity. Getting them some intro lessons shows that you support their passions.
- Concerts and Shows: A concert is a time honored way of creating lasting memories with those you love.
- Spas and Treatments: If you are a woman, or otherwise into pampering, spas, manicures, massages and other treatments can be highly relaxing. This is a great gift idea for the stressed out business person in your life.
- Home Entertainment: I got a Bluetooth portable speaker a few years ago and it changed my life. Same thing with the Google Chromecast. Getting someone a gift that changes how they view media is sure to be utilized every day.
- Software: For anyone interested in editing photos and video (or just about everything else related to design), the right software package might be the perfect gift. I got Photoshop software one year and used it to learn graphic design.
- Sports and Hobbies: Consider someone’s top interests and simply buy an accessory that would be useful. For instance, for a tennis player your can give a gift basket of accessories: balls, tape, strings, dampeners, an instructional DVD or even a new racket. Make sure you’re not getting something that will be redundant. You might have to do some investigating when dealing with a hobbyist who is likely to own everything related to their hobby.
- Sleep Solutions: If you can improve someone’s daily comfort, you can be sure your gift will be remembered. I know I will never forget the person who gave me a memory foam mattress and pillow.
- Providing Assistance: Write a coupon book of helpful chores you can do around the house. Throw in some back massages (when appropriate) and a few humorous coupons and you’ll be golden. However, when your coupon book has a lot of “good” coupons, like the one for my wife did, be prepared for having to randomly do chores throughout the year!
- DIY Projects and Repairs: If you are handy with tools, can troubleshoot computers or can build something impressive you have a lifelong fallback for highly praised gifts. Don’t bother if you’re going to half-ass the project though, a hand-made gift is only meaningful if you take care to ensure it’s well made.
- Home Cooked Meal: For a casual gift, or to give thanks to a gracious host, cooking a home cooked meal can go a long way towards showing sincere appreciation.
- Photo Albums: Especially for family, selecting and presenting photographs in a meaningful way always makes for a meaningful gift. Old photos can conjure up feelings of intense happiness and nostalgia which is hard to replicate with any other gift.
What are your favorite gift ideas? Which gifts are the most meaningful? Let me know and I will give you the gift of response.
These are fantastic ideas! No more crappy candles as gifts. 😉 This year we did a lot more DIY gifts to save money. I mostly focused on pampering items and fancy food items (bourbon soaked cherries, ciabatta loaves, pickles, etc.)
Thanks Mrs. Picky Pincher,
I looove fancy food items like dark chocolate or good liquor, mostly because I don’t like accumulating stuff.
As good as the ideas are, I can’t take my eyes off of the infographic. It is somehow soothing and at the same time stimulating. It draws you into a maze you don’t want to get out of.