The Art of Gift Giving

Remember that no matter what gift you give, the most important thing is that it comes from the heart.

Whether piled under the tree, peeking out from a pretty bag or box, or delivered to your front door, there’s nothing quite like the pure joy of receiving a gift meant just for you. And although getting gifts never truly loses its excitement, the pleasure of giving and seeing that joy in someone else becomes the best gift of all. 

If you’ve ever been stumped on just what makes a gift great, you’re not alone. That’s why we’re taking a deep dive to discover the why, how, and what behind the art of gift giving to help you become a pro when it comes to picking that perfect present. 

Gift Giving: A Universal Love Language 

Where Did the Tradition of Gift Giving Come From? 

Gift giving has been practiced by cultures and communities all over the world since our start. From cavemen to the Greeks and Romans, giving gifts has played an integral part of our interpersonal, familial, and social customs as a way to show respect, love, gratitude and more. 

Those deep-rooted traditions of gift giving are still seen today, acting as a common way to: 

  • Show your loved ones how much you care 
  • Celebrate special milestone or achievement 
  • Make someone feel special and appreciated
  • Spread holiday cheer!

What Makes a Good Gift?

When it comes to gift giving, the most important thing is that it comes from the heart.

And while there is technically no right or wrong way to give gifts, there are still some time-tested truths that can help ensure your gift is always a hit.

  • Always keep the person you're giving it to top of mind. Taking their age, interests, and connection to you into consideration to help you make the right choice. 
  • Try to think of something the person will actually use or enjoy. There's nothing worse than getting a gift that just sits around and collects dust.
  • Add a touch of personalization to the gift when appropriate. A gift that is unique and thoughtful will be much more appreciated than a generic present.

The Psychology of Gift Giving

Most people enjoy giving and receiving gifts, but what’s the psychological impact? While gift giving has increasingly become somewhat of a social norm, for centuries people have given gifts for a few main reasons: 

  • To strengthen social bonds
  • To make others happy
  • To receive something in return (even if it’s just satisfaction)

Obviously, motivation matters when it comes to giving a gift. Because when you genuinely want to have a positive impact on someone else, you’re more likely to experience a positive outcome in return.

What are the benefits of giving gifts?

Giving gifts can be beneficial for both the giver and the recipient. 

  • It can make the recipient feel good. Receiving a gift can be a great way to boost someone's mood and make them feel loved and appreciated.
  • It can make the giver feel good, too. Studies have shown that our brains enjoy and remember the joy of giving gifts much more than receiving them. 
  • It can strengthen relationships. Giving gifts is a great way to show how much you care and to continue to build on your relationships with loved ones.

Gift Giving Guide 

Perhaps one of the most important parts about gift-giving is just how to go about picking that perfect present. 

There are plenty of factors at play when choosing a gift, but you at least want to carefully consider:

  • The recipient: What are their interests? How about their likes and dislikes? It’s important to choose something that they would truly enjoy or appreciate.
  • Your relationship with the recipient: Are you buying the gift for a close friend or family member? Or is it for someone you don't know very well? Gifts with a personal touch are more appropriate, and valuable, to the people closest to you.
  • The occasion: Is the gift for a special occasion, like a birthday or holiday? Or is it just an everyday kind of gift? Gifts for special occasions should be more thoughtful and personal, while everyday gifts can be more simple.
  • Your budget: How much money do you want to spend on the gift? You don't have to spend a lot of money to give a good gift, but it's important to stay on budget. Sometimes, something handmade can be the most priceless gift of all. 

Gift Giving Ideas 

You’ve done your homework and have considered all factors, but you’re still not sure where to start when it comes to choosing the actual gift? 

Here are a few quick thought-starters to help you narrow it down:

  • A gift card to the recipient's favorite store or restaurant
  • Tickets to a show or event that the recipient would enjoy
  • A basket filled with the recipient's favorite things
  • A gift certificate for a day of pampering at a spa or salon
  • A homemade gift, like a photo album or scrapbook
  • Cash—there’s nothing wrong with keeping it simple if it’s what they truly want 

If you’re struggling to come up with more specific ideas, reliable product review websites are a great resource for scoping out potential gifts for any occasion.

Thinking Outside the Box

Sometimes, the perfect gift isn’t something you can wrap. 

In lieu of traditional gifts, experiences can make for some of the most enjoyable and memorable gifts of all! 

Try something like: 

  • Tickets to a play, concert or sporting event
  • A gift card for a massage or manicure/pedicure
  • A weekend getaway
  • An activity, class or adventure 

In the end, we all want to surprise and delight the person on the receiving end of our gift, which in turn brings a lasting sense of joy to our own lives. 

So before heading out on your next shopping spree, remember that no matter what gift you give, the most important thing is that it comes from the heart. And it’s finding that balance between thoughtfulness and fun that can be the key to gift giving greatness.

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Trae Bodge

Trae Bodge is the shopping expert here at GiftYa. Trae helps people find the best deals and ideas on popular new items to purchase.

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