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How to make people/relationships v. Presents & gifts more important this year

As we start shifting away from last year’s isolating holidays and slowly get together again this year, togetherness is now more emphasized than ever. Gift-giving in particular is shifting alongside our circumstances.

The pandemic has opened the eyes of many on what they truly value and seek out in life, and as we slowly assimilate we see a yearning for community again and a higher value in people/relationships more than tangible gifts and material things.

Below are some ways on how you can make these holidays more meaningful by putting relationships first.

4 ways to put people over presents

1-Make time for others, especially when it matters most to them: If someone has expressed that a certain movie, for example, is of their high interest, taking the time to watch it with them or have a deep conversation about it with them can go a long way for that person. To them, this shows that you’re invested into their interests and ultimately them as a person. Making time for others and to do these small acts of appreciation can go further than simply purchasing a gift related to the interest at hand.

2-Make human connection the #1 priority: Things such as meeting a friend for a walk or taking the time to call someone can make someone truly feel connected. Getting together wasn’t possible before during the height of the pandemic, so taking the time out of our day to do so can have a lasting, positive impact on a relational dynamic.

3-Present yourself as active in a conversation by frequently asking questions and genuinely listening by the act of engagement: Show that you value those around you this holiday season by truly being emotionally present through small acts such as having an effective communication (eg, eye contact, no interrupting, and active listening and related responses). This also includes putting all electronics away for a brief moment and simply, genuinely interacting with those around you.

4-Lastly, helping others to make people/relationships more important by having experiences with others vs. the purchasing of tangible gifts: These “Experiences” last a lifetime whether they’re captured in photos/videos or not. The essence is to find ways to ‘gift’ that experience that can often lead to a lifetime of happiness and great memories for someone.

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