Men have a bad rap when it comes to giving gifts. To be fair, some of this reputation is deserved. If you’re not one of those guys who wait until the last minute to grab gifts at a convenience store, you probably know 10 guys who do exactly this. Never fear. Now is always a good time to step up your gift giving game.
5 Gift Giving Tips
By following these tips and avoiding waiting until the last minute, you can find the perfect gift, whether the recipient is a friend, family member, colleague or partner.
1. Draw From Your Experiences Getting Gifts
Fortunately, you should already have experience receiving gifts. You know what other folks have done right and wrong when getting you presents. When you got something you hated, what happened? Why did you hate it? Common scenarios in which this happens include:
- Your mother gets you clothes every year despite you asking her not to, and they’re never your style.
- Your father tried to make up for forgetting gifts much of the time by giving huge, splashy, embarrassing presents.
- Your loved one or friend went to the store at the last minute and got you whatever they could find.
When it comes to gift giving, avoid the same behaviors that turned you off. Ponder the gifts you loved, too. Consider what made those gifts special.
2. Put Yourself in the Mind of the Recipient
Whoever the recipients are, think about what they would want. Have they been telling you repeatedly what they desire? Then you probably should get exactly that.
Think about factors such as whether the recipient plays sports, reads, loves jewelry, or has another specific interest or hobby. Consider that person’s favorite color and whether he or she prefers material gifts or experience gifts. Experts say that experiential gifts don’t have to be experienced with the recipient to bring you two closer together, either. When you two shop together, observe the items the recipient is drawn to. You can even ask, “Do you like this?”
3. Get Help From the Recipient’s Friends
There’s no shame in seeking help. Turn to your girlfriend’s friends, your mom (for a gift for your dad), and even your child’s pals. You might have a fun few hours shopping together. If nothing else, though, friends and loved ones of the recipient are great sources of ideas.
4. Keep a Gift Giving Notebook
Gifts are a year-round thing (really a lifetime thing), so jot down great ideas when you have them. Don’t try to remember. You’ll forget. You can purchase the gifts then, too, and store them in a gifts drawer or closet.
You can customize gifts by gifting experiences (a weekend trip, spa day, etc.), making a gift basket, baking cookies, writing poetry, or building something. Delegating is fine, too. Local artists would be thrilled to do paintings on commission.
Expect More of Yourself When Gift Giving
Getting better at gift giving comes down to knowing you can do it and expecting more of yourself. The slacking off you’ve done in the past stops right now. For more on making the most of yourself as a man, check out the “Hustle” posts on Rugged Standard.