Philosophies on Gift Giving

gift giving

As Thanksgiving approaches so does the holiday season and ultimately Hallmark’s favorite time of year: gift giving.

This episode discusses different philosophies about giving gifts including some alternative views on how gift giving shouldn’t be restricted to specific times of the year.

QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY: What’s your philosophy on gift giving? Please let me know in the comments.

Scroll below for links and show notes…

Selected Links from the Episode

Show Notes

  • Being a traditionalist with respect to the holiday season [03:03]
  • Checking people off the gift giving list [04:11]
  • Not gift giving simply during a specific part of the year [04:49]
  • Specific holidays feel like they were made simply to give gifts [05:45]
  • Not feeling right by giving people holiday gifts [06:51]
  • Breaking yourself of the holiday gift giving routine [07:38]
  • Desensitization of gift giving [08:29]
  • Different family gift giving philosophies [09:40]
  • Giving ideas for what you want so you don’t get random crap [10:30]
  • Not being the asshole that doesn’t reciprocate [11:14]
  • People aren’t asking for gifts and the breeding ground for bad gifts [12:30]
  • Random acts of kindness [13:40]
  • Starbucks gift card handouts to show appreciation [15:20]
  • Living through someone else via your gifts [19:12]
  • The expectations of getting and giving a gift [20:18]
  • Try giving gifts outside the holiday season [21:22]
  • People created holidays as an excuse to get together [22:13]
  • Not having an expectation of receiving a gift [22:35]
  • The phrase, “Hey how are you doing?” [24:21]
  • If you don’t care, don’t ask the question [25:39]

One response to “Philosophies on Gift Giving”

  1. Lindsey Sweet says:

    LOVE it!

    Something else that wasn’t quite touched on, is the financial strain of gift giving. Jonathan’s family is quite large, and when we first started dating I felt really overwhelmed about getting every. single. person. a gift on my meager salary from being a nanny. Not only do I have the stress of going out and shopping (could be a whole other podcast topic) to get something that’s viewed as thoughtful but also, even if those “thoughtful” gifts are inexpensive, buying 20 of those gifts can end up costing hundreds. Then I feel stressed because I have to limit my spending, and end up getting something less special for each person.

    We did the gift giving at traditional times for a few years, and then I just came to a breaking point. Jonathan never really cared for it, so he was quite supportive. We just started telling people we’re not into gifts and that we would rather spend quality time with them. I think most people responded pretty well. Some people still gave us gifts, and people still do, but I think they feel less offended when we don’t reciprocate. In turn, some of Jonathan’s family members have also participated in this idea of gift giving just because.

    I recently hosted a surprise birthday party for my Mother-in-law, and my sister-in-law Kathy brought me a beautiful little air plant. I asked her why she got it for me, and she said, “Because I saw it and I thought of you; I know you love these little guys.” It was so special, and it made me feel appreciated which I think should always be the goal when gift giving.

    So don’t let your guilt get the best of you! Give gifts when you want; break free from societal norms!

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