Commentary: The secret to gift giving

Your time is the best gift to give


staff photo

Sydney Sewell

  This holiday season, some may wonder what the best gift for their loved one is. Some may even wonder if it is worth spending a months savings or more on a ring, new computer, or bike. Here’s the deal… it’s probably not.

  Material items can’t last forever. This depends on the person, but if someone were to, say, give me a bracelet, I would likely lose it soon after receiving it. On the other hand, others may cherish the bracelet so much that they wouldn’t even dare putting it on in fear of breaking, scratching or losing it.

  Material items also are not always dependable. Shopping for presents can take all day, and not finding the perfect gift can be discouraging.

  What about all the hours one can spend shopping trying to find the perfect shirt for a friend, only to realize it is too big on the day of?

  This, in most cases, can be a huge waste of time and an abundance of added stress.

  There is a solution to this common holiday stress of gift giving – this year forget the material items. Instead, give the gift of time.

   Time is something we all want more of. More time to sleep, study, practice, etc. But what about more time together? Sometimes, especially during the holiday season, we forget to spend time with the ones we care about the most.

  Instead of spending late nights getting last minute deals at the mall, stay home and watch a Christmas movie with friends.

  Spend the money you would have used at the mall on an ice skating date or a family game night at Golfland under the lights.

 Make memories with the money you chose to spend, don’t buy items.

Make memories with the money you chose to spend, don’t buy items

 Find something your loved one has always wanted to do or a goal they have. Then spend your Christmas money towards an experience you can create to help them achieve that goal.

  For example, if they have always wanted to skydive, buy a ticket to I Fly and watch them live out their dream. Or pay for a class that can contribute to the practice needed for their goal.  

  Take your sibling out to lunch or a movie. Spend the day with them instead of friends to make them feel special and appreciated.

   Plan a day of relaxation for your mom or friend. Pay for a yoga class or trip to the spa. Or you can even plan a day of adventure and buy a disposable camera to capture the moments together. The possibilities are endless.

  If you can’t think of an experience to give, think of a past experience that brought a lot of joy and focus your gift on recreating or remembering that.

  This is easy to do by creating simple photo books. You can fill these books with pictures and descriptions of the experience to help your loved one remember all the fun they had.

  Don’t limit the options to material items this holiday season. The memories and experiences you create can last a lifetime and, unlike items, they can’t be broken, stolen nor lost.