The Best Holiday Gift Guide: 7 gifts to give (anytime of the year)

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I got a bunch of emails with the title “my holiday gift guide” the past couple of weeks. And I know... we’re all doing our Christmas shopping (I actually finished mine yesterday!), so getting some tips might help. But the type of gifts on this blog post are not the ones you can buy at a store, or order from Amazon. & you know what? There are things (material things) we need and want, for sure. I have a bunch. But there are also non-material things we need or want, consciously or not, that would be nice to get (and give) ~ and not only in December!  

So here I’ll give you ideas (or #UnsolicitedAdvice) for gifts that you can give to the ones you love, to your co-workers, or to the people who cross your way on the streets, in traffic, in life. Ready? Take notes.

1 - A Compliment

Cliché? Maybe. Worthy giving? Totally. Because you’ll make someone’s day! Never fake it, please. But if something from that person catches your attention in a good way, say it. Let her know. It doesn’t matter if it’s her hair, or how she handled a situation. It’ll boost that person’s confidence and energy, and that vibe will come right back at ya.

2 - Support

A friend of yours is having a baby, or starting a business. Your co-worker has a presentation. Show support. In every single way you can. You can look in her eye and say “you got this” or you can ask “what can I do to help?” These attitudes make a difference, trust me. When starting my first business, and up until now, the thing that I expected the most from people in my circle was support, and I didn’t feel like I had it. The entrepreneurial road is bumpy, and you don’t have to get it -- but asking how the person is doing, or how you can hold her accountable is a great start. Same if a friend is becoming a mom -- she’ll say she’s fine, but she’s just trying to hold her shit together. Motherhood is complicated, so make sure you show support offering help like you mean it, not just in a polite way, you know? So whatever it is your friend or brother or mother-in-law is doing, show support. You don’t need to get it, you just need to be there for them.

3 - Empathy

This is a practice that, unfortunately, not everyone is up to. Can you imagine how different the world would be if most of us were a little more empathetic? So try it. It’s difficult, I know, and that’s why it’s a freaking (daily) practice. So before judging and making conclusions about someone, try to put yourself in their situation. Try to walk in their shoes. And understand that we, human beings, are different. And the differences go beyond our looks and fingerprints. One of the best gifts you can be willing to give, in my opinion, is this one.

4 - Listen

O.M.G. How great is this gift? I mean… truly listening. Without jumping to conclusions or guesses (I need to practice that too!), letting the person finish her story. Being present when she’s talking. Even if you have nothing to say back. Learn how to listen. And offer that.

5 - Kindness

Kindness does cause a ripple effect. And it can start with you: greet people in the elevator, hold the door for somebody, buy a meal for a homeless, stand for someone who doesn’t have a voice. Or give any of the gifts on this list, and you’ll actually be giving kindness along with it.

6 - Hold Your Anger

You’re having a bad day? It’s not my fault. It’s not your Uber driver’s fault. Actually, it’s nobody’s fault (sorry to say that, I don’t like this fact either). You have the right to be angry. But you do not get to pass your anger and frustrations to others who have nothing to do with it. So take a deep freaking breath, and try to be kind. Doing this, you’ll be giving a gift to the world, because the same way kindness has a ripple effect, anger does too.

7 - Share Growth

Share a thought, a quote, an Instagram post, a podcast. It can be a line from a book you’re reading, or a story you heard. If it’s encouragement, if it’s something that can help someone somehow, share it. Send it. Email it. Post it. Opportunity for growth is everywhere, and you’ll see it if you look for it. And when you find it, share it. (you can start sharing this post or the last one if you liked it hahaha).

These gifts cost no money. As I said, you can’t find them at a store or on Amazon. You’re the one who manufactures each of them. And you just gotta be willing to deliver.

Happy holidays. <3

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Xo,
Izabelle