Every year, shoppers engage in the annual dilemma of what gifts to give to their friends, families and loved ones during the holiday season. During an economic recession, the difficulty is only exacerbated. Whether you’re trying to save money this year, or are looking for a valid excuse to give something more meaningful to the ones you care about, here’s a short list of things that you might find more meaningful to give during the holidays this year — some cost nothing, and others cost only as much as you are willing to give.
Have you ever felt like there aren’t enough hours in the day to get everything done? You’re not the only one, and many of us tend to feel like we have even less time during the holiday season. With this is mind, something as simple as the gift of your precious time can be a very meaningful gift to give. Your time may be precious, but it will be so appreciated and even more precious to someone who needs it.
This holiday season, put yourself in someone else’s shoes. Give them your sincere understanding. Lend your ears and offer empathy and compassion when someone else is going through a hard time or facing a challenge. A gift of sympathy and understanding goes a long way.
Give an Apology
An apology goes a long way to rectify a strained relationship. An apology is not a sign of weakness. Rather, it’s a sign of strength, courage and self-confidence. An apology is not an indication that you are giving up. It’s not a sign that you aren’t unwavering and steadfast in your determination. You are overcoming a natural stubbornness when you apologize. Your apology may even inspire someone to apologize to you.
One can find great courage and strength in offering forgiveness—even to those who are undeserving of it. Forgiveness is the act of disconnecting oneself from the destructive and negative emotions of being hurt by another. When you forgive, you are no longer vengeful, bitter, vindictive, angry or resentful. You can either just decide to let the hurt go, or you can actively seek out the person in order to make amends and reconcile. Like an apology, forgiveness is not a sign of weakness. It’s a sign of strength, self-confidence and humanity.
Routinely reflecting upon one’s thankfulness is a humbling practice. Reminding yourself regularly of your gifts, advantages and privileges in life (however big or small) helps you focus on what is most important in life. And when you are thankful for what you have, you will want to give to others with a great deal of love.
I hope you give and receive these kinds of meaningful gifts this holiday season.