How to Take the Stress out of Gift Giving 

October 29, 2021

How to Take the Stress out of Gift Giving 

Birthdays, anniversaries, baby showers and holidays are all exciting special occasions for celebrating with the people you love. They’re also a time for giving and receiving gifts from the important people in your life. While giving presents is an incredible way to offer a token of your love and appreciation to friends and family, some people find gift exchanges more stressful than fun. If you find yourself breaking into a cold sweat at the thought of picking out a present, here are some helpful tips to ease the strain. 

Why Is Gift Giving Stressful?

Many people feel overwhelmed when it comes time to exchange presents, especially during big gifting holidays such as Christmas. If you’re the type of person who feels anxious at the thought of gift shopping, you may not even be certain where those feelings are coming from. 

Gift Giving Anxiety

Most people that experience gift giving anxiety do so because of the pressure they’re feeling. 

The pressure may come from an external source (for example, your mother in law who has hated everything you’ve ever given her) or it may be pressure you’re putting on yourself. Its common to feel like we have to find the perfect give for everyone, and while that determination comes from a place of love, sometimes it causes us to get in our own way. 

How To Be Better At Gift Giving

If you want to learn how you be better at gift giving without causing yourself extra stress, here are some tips on how to lessen or ease your gifting anxiety. 

Set Boundaries 

Discuss expectations for presents with your friends and family beforehand. This may include setting a budget and discussing what sort of gifts everyone wants. Some may be looking for a physical present while others would prefer a gift card. Knowing what everyone expects takes away some of the guesswork for you. 

Consider Gift Cards
At some point, it became common for people to outright dismiss gift cards as an option. While they may feel less personal than purchasing a specific gift, gift cards are a great way to guarantee you give someone a present they want. Some people are just pickier and would prefer to select something themselves, and this way you can stop stressing over what to get and make both your lives easier. 

Put the Shoe on the Other Foot 

While there are people that are just determined to dislike every gift (your mother in law, again) for the most part your friends and family are not judging your gifts the way you’d expect. Consider how many times you’ve gotten a gift that was obviously given with caring intentions, and judged them for it. We understand when someone has genuinely tried to purchase a gift we would want, and the gesture is appreciated more than you assume. 

Cut Yourself Some Slack 

This is obviously easier said than done, but sometimes you just need to get off your own back. Just like remembering that those receiving a gift from you aren’t being nearly as critical of it as you are, you also need to remember that you needn’t be that critical of it, either. Caring about the gifts you give is good, but not if its going to make you sick. 

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