6 Ways to Gift From the Heart — Heart-Light Studios
Trade-in Shopping Madness for Thoughtful Thinking
The holiday approached with a mixed bag of emotions. One of joy and gratitude for the opportunity to get together with family and friends after spending last year apart. The other of dread with the obligation of finding that perfect gift.
With so much already on our plate, it’s easy to run to the mall or Amazon and buy a ton of unnecessary gifts in the act of showing others we care, but this mindset has me thinking that there has to be a better way to make the holiday a special one.
As my family gets older and the need for gifts is less, I want to make a conscious effort to fill my loved ones’ stockings with love. It’s 2021 and we are well aware of the landfill problem that grows by the day. So as you rush to find that perfect gift consider something meaningful both for the person and for our environment. This should be a joyous occasion when we reflect on love, family, and hope, yet this time of year is too often stressful, overwhelming, and exhausting.
If you’re like me, you are more excited about making the holidays an experience. You may be ready to ditch the traditional abundance of gifts in exchange for something more heart-felt.
Below are 6 ways to show love and gratitude this holiday that are far more meaningful than any material gifts.
Sharing an experience with someone you love is a blessing that lasts for years to come. Not only are you creating memories, but you are building on a bond. After the Christmas rush is over we are often let down by the overwhelm of the day. When you give an experience it gives you more excitement to look forward to. These types of gifts allow the recipient to explore their interest and go experience something in a way that will leave an effect on them that goes far beyond Christmas day. So skip the clutter of a novelty gift and splurge for cooking lessons or tickets to the big game instead.
Make someone feel extra special this year by spending time connecting with them.
- Take your kids to a retirement home and connect them with their elderly relatives. Bring a gingerbread house that they can create together.
- Have a list of questions that you share to spark conversation.
- Invite a friend or a neighbor over for lunch and build a stronger community that stays with them all year.
Time is one of our most precious resources and we don’t give it consciously to others often at all. We waste so much time on social media or watching trash tv and not enough time listening to our children or parents. The gift of time is a gift of self and the memories could transform someone’s idea of you and the holidays forever.
A great way to pay it forward is to make a charitable donation in someone’s name to their favorite organization or cause. You could support something local that is dear to someone’s heart or make it more global. Donating to charity lifts everyone up. It shows the recipient that you listen and care about the causes and things important to them, and it makes you feel good too. The organization benefits and might even adopt a new yearly donor.
If you have trouble choosing a charity start asking your loved one what kinds of issues matter to them. You can always take clues from their life as well. Are they a vegetarian? An animal lover? A civil rights activist? A promoter of women’s rights? Are they always posting about our school system and ways to support it? Or have a tender heart for the homeless.
We all leave clues to who we are and what things matter to us. Pay attention. This attention and action say a lot about who you are as a listener in the lives of those you love.
Over my lifetime I have seen the number of holiday cards get less and less personal. I love getting pictures of all my loved ones’ families but it is clear this was done on a service where the family has little to no contact with the card at all. When I do still get the Christmas letter from my college friend in California I absolutely love it. It always comes with a sweet hello and a message of gratitude and love.
One of the most powerful ways to show you care is as simple as saying thank you. A holiday card is a perfect time and place to do such a thing. Say thank you to those who make a difference in your world. Personalize it. How many baristas or bartenders get Christmas cards from customers they serve daily? Not many, and there is no doubt that that simple act leaves a huge impression. When you look around your life there are so many reasons to say thank you and who doesn’t love to get a card in the mail.
If cards aren’t your thing, you can find other ways to send messages of thanks to those that make your life easy. Perhaps it’s a couple of cookies left in the mailbox for the mail person or a box of sweets for the janitor in the office. Small tokens go a long way and the interaction with these individuals will be lasting and improved for years to come.
A couple years ago a friend gave me a used book for Christmas. It was the best. She wrote on the inside about how the book impacted her life and why she chose to share it with me. It was meaningful and impactful. Not only was it one of the most throughout gifts I received that year, but it gave her and me an opportunity to connect later in the year once I had read the book to chat about it. It also inspired me to do the same. The following year I started collecting books I found at the thrift store that I wanted to share and two weeks before Christmas I headed into Half Price Books and picked up a couple more. Everyone got books and it made for great conversation and opened an opportunity for my family and friends to learn a little more about me.
We are more stressed out, depressed, and anxious than at any other time in human history! We have become disconnected from our breath and it’s killing us slowly. My online course, Breath Mindset was made and designed to help people connect with their breath and disconnect from the cycle of anxiety and overwhelm that is running their life. Help someone you love to reconnect to their intuition, confidence, and purpose through the gift of breath. The lasting effects will pour out into their lives in powerful ways which will shape their experience from this moment on. They will be forever thankful for the gift that led them away from depression and into abundance.
However you decide to give this year I hope it is done from the heart. We all have a unique way of showcasing our love and appreciation for another. Don’t waste an opportunity to open your heart and share your gratitude with those you love. This is the perfect holiday to show someone you care.
Let me know how you decide to give from the heart.
Originally published at http://heart-lightstudios.com on December 16, 2021.