The art of gift-giving is sometimes a thing of mystery. Humans, being an incredibly social species are studied for this very act – born out of selflessness, good art giving is to give without expecting any gift in return.

It has stunned psychologists on human behaviours – as an insight into how we operate and the traits that follow our lifestyle.

Many couples celebrate their anniversaries by surprising each other with golden anniversary gift ideas into their 50 years of marriage, and many others celebrate monthly anniversaries or commonly termed, “month-versary”. Some celebrates a certain period of days, weeks and months since being together, breaking free of the yearly connotation to anniversaries that has been a tradition over the years.

A Cause to Celebrate

Either way, anniversaries are a chance to recollect, reminisce and recognize the time spent together in our unpredictable human life on earth. It’s definitely a cause to celebrate and that sometimes, makes gift giving a very troubling thing to do.

Enters Lea, aged 24 years old, and absolutely dreading the anniversary coming up soon since being together with her beloved boyfriend for 6 years. Each year, she’s tried to outdo herself in gift-giving, only for the next year to be put into the same position again. She has spent countless hours thinking of the perfect gift. Should she buy something she knows he’ll love, but at a high cost? Should she create a DIY-gift, that could save cost but may or may not be to his preference? The ideas are endless, and she’s stuck.

That’s me too, not so long ago. Gift-giving is tough, my friends.

So, What Should You Give?

Well, that really depends on your partner or loved one. Some love extraordinary parties or bashes that is really instagrammable, and the others might just be content with a simple dinner over candlelight or so. The list of things to give is endless, but it all depends on who you’re giving it to.

How Do You Choose A Great Anniversary Gift?

Gifting your parents, a beautiful recollection of treasured memories might be fantastic, such as treasured childhood photos decked in a gold encrusted border for the photo frame itself. Now, if you’re looking to gift your significant other that might need you to be a bit more creative to wow them. If that’s what you’re looking to do, then dig deep and find out what they truly cherish. You’d be surprised – it might not be the latest iPhone or Android phones.

How many times have you chosen a present that he or she might use or talk about for a week or two and it just ends up in the back pile of the store room, months later?

Regardless of the occasion for celebration, gift-giving as an art which requires a level of consideration and careful planning – read on for 5 essential tips and tricks.

5 Essential Tips to Gift-Giving

Tip #1: Gifts Should Come in Ones, Not Twos

The idea of pairing a smaller gift to a bigger one might be tempting. As interesting as it sounds, this very act actually undermines and devalues the main gift we’re giving to a loved one. Think of it this way – when we add a tie to an expensive collared shirt, not only does it look tacky, but the bundle of the gifts unconsciously averages the actual value of the main gift. All in all, we might just hurt the impact of the main gift.

Commonly termed, “Presenter’s Paradox”, this art of giving “more for more” can be quite detrimental. We should always strive for the “less is more” mindset when gifting gifts.

Tip #2: Bet on Experiences, Not on Material Value

The hype for a brand-new iPhone or a fancy watch may die down within a matter of days or weeks. But a once-in-a-lifetime dream of seeing your favourite artist perform, or dining in that exclusive Michelin-star restaurant that you’ve wanted for so long will give you good memories to cherish forever.

Choose wisely when gifting, always bet on memories and experiences rather than superficial material value.

Psychologist Thomas Gilovich’s research into the value of material items shows that money spent on doing provides more enduring happiness than money spent on having. 

Tip #3: Gift cards Is A Better Alternative for Cash

Oftentimes, gifting cash as a gift may come across as rude, lazy or offensive in certain cultures or customs. The very act of just handing out plain cold cash may even seem rushed or shows how unprepared one is. Thus, resorting to the most unoriginal and uncreative gift ever.

That absolutely can destroy relationships. Although every gift has one thing in common – it costs and thus cash is involved – it is always better to hand out gift cards in substitute for cash. It automatically looks and designed to be an actual thought-out gift in a nicer presentation. Plus, it still holds cash in it, so it’s a win-win situation for all.

They aren’t perfect – there’s definitely assumptions of billions of dollars’ worth of loss for those unredeemed each year, but they’re definitely a better option than a rushed or unplanned gift.

Tip #4: When Gifting, Think Like the Receiver

Put yourself in the receiver’s shoes. Would you like what you received? If yes, then way to go! Your gift may just be the next cherished item of your loved one for life.

If you had doubts – then perhaps it’s time to revaluate the gift chosen. It might just need to be thought of at a greater detail – is it valuable to the receiver? When utilising the gift, will the receiver’s life be improved?

Sometimes when we think of giving gifts, gifting someone something that’ll provide utility or happiness should always be the case rather than just shopping blindly for the sake of giving. 

Tip #5: Spend More on Others, Than on Yourself

Always think back to the reason for gift-giving. Understand your purpose in giving gifts for your loved one, and less on what you might get back in return.

Wrapping Up…

When you choose to give selflessly, you’ll always get back ten-fold of that happiness in many ways, significant or otherwise. That should always be the mantra – give because it makes them happy, don’t give to make yourself happy in getting something in exchange.

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