When you decide to live with less, birthdays and other holidays can be challenging. I love the idea of a thoughtful gift, but don’t want to give or receive any more “stuff”.
I am not sure what others find more confusing, that you don’t want to give gifts or that you don’t want to receive them. Not wanting to give and receive “stuff” does not make you cheap, ungrateful or thoughtless. In fact, thinking about a gift that will enhance someone’s life or just make their day a little brighter is kind and very thoughtful.
Let people know that you have been downsizing, living more simply and uncluttering. With a simple explanation, they might not just understand, but embrace exchanging gifts more minimally. Talk to friends and family about putting a moratorium on gift giving for all or certain holidays. You might find they are relieved to stop looking for the perfect gift, save money, and really focus on the actual holiday. The best way to celebrate a special occasion is to spend time with the people you love, but, if you must give gifts, give ones that matter or that are useful.
What would you add to the following list of gifts for a minimalist?
- Concert or event tickets
- Movie passes
- A class – cooking classes, wine tasting, art classes, dancing lessons
- Music – create a playlist or CD including favorite song
- Art – a painting or limited edition photograph by a local artist
- Homemade gift certificates – good for a car wash, housecleaning or yard work
- Vegetable plant or tree that you can move outside
- Words – write something from the heart
- Donate – give time or money to a worthy cause