Thirty-four percent of Americans will return gifts they received over the holiday season according to a study by WalletHub. As the holiday offerings ramp up sooner and sooner every year, let’s keep this statistic in mind (such a time suck for all involved). Tis the season to take a few minutes to pause and consider, are we shopping for the recipients or are we shopping to complete our to do list? Here are 3 tips to ground into sustainable gifting this holiday season.
Make your list and check it twice. Does your list include people you really don’t feel it’s authentic to shop for (aka gilt gift)? We need to normalize gilt gifts. It sucks and it shows in the last minute convincing you do when you just try to find anything to gift them. Have a conversation with that person and be honest, tell them you don’t want to exchange gifts anymore. It may seem awkward but they may feel the same way you do, and once you talk it’s done. No more lingering in the future on if you should or shouldn’t buy for them. End the sympathy buying and tell them all the ways you appreciate them and how being in there presence is present enough.
Are you gifting what you like or what they like? Check in and truly ask yourself, and then ask them for a list of items they really want. To insure surprise you can give them a number of items to reach and choose which are in your financial health and personal ethos for the season.
Take a walk in their shoes. Don’t feel comfortable asking for a list or are they saying they are not sure what they’d like? Simply sprinkle magic into their day-to-day. Where do they get their coffee, massage, play a sport, receive healing? Not all gifts are wrapped in a bow (and that’s ok and less wasteful anyway). Some of the best gifts are gift certificates for a service or experience that aligns with the recipients interests (this also keeps money local which is a great ethos to weave in).
Once you’ve grounded yourself in the above tips and not the advertisements, you can shop from a place of clarity. Let me know in the comments below what you are doing to sustainably gift this holiday season?