Monday, December 27, 2010

The Gift We Didn't Want

After Chanukah and Christmas, many of us are left with gifts we really do not want or like.  We may console ourselves with the principle that it is the thought that counts.  I admit that I am not so generous.  It is a fault that I should improve.  However, let me justify my position.  First a quick disclaimer, this discussion does not include small token gifts like hostess gifts.  A gift is meant for the pleasure of the recipient.  The physical giving is beautiful, but an intention to give something of joy and value to the recipient as a unique and appreciated individual is truly special.  I like to put myself in someone else's "space" and give something useful.  Sometimes I hit a home run.  Other times I don't.  Just in case I will make a mistake, I try to give a gift that can be returned or exchanged.  I simply want the recipient to have a gift they can use.

Ranting a little further, the personalized gift is so ego centered and the opposite of considering another's feelings.  Gifts with personalizing include pictures and figurines with the gift giver's name and face all over them.  I once read of a man who had hundreds of bobble heads made in his image and distributed them as gifts and business favors.  Apart from his mother, no one else wants that bobble head.  Technology has made it possible to personalize almost anything.  People can design their own water bottles, shoes, mattresses, yoga mats, earphones, cell phone covers - the list is endless.  Go ahead do it and have fun with it for yourself.  Do not assume everyone else values your personal name, face, and preferences above their own.

Gifts can cost a lot of money too, so I really like to make sure that I give a gift that has some potential exchange value.  However, there is a priceless gift you can give anytime - meaning it costs you no money and is so valuable to the person.  Stumped?  Try giving the gift of love and acceptance.  Everybody wants that and it will make you feel good too.

Stay healthy & well,

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