Though giving is still a part of our holiday festivities, we've slowly shifted towards gifting in smaller, more practical, intentional, and meaningful ways. If you're looking to add a minimalist slant to your holiday season and tone down the shopping, there are a few ways to give gifts intentionally without going overboard.
Here, a few tips on holiday shopping as a minimalist:
I'm sure you read that Atlantic article a while back that declared that experiences have been proven to give us longer lasting, more fulfilling pleasure than things, right? Use that idea and scale it according to the size of gift you want to give. It could be anything from a simple one-on-one dinner out at a new restaurant, something as a big as a trip, or something as everyday as a credit towards a gym or yoga studio – I got this for my birthday, and loved it. Whatever it is, gift experiences that require extra thought, planning, and care. You really can't go wrong.
My favorite category of gifts has been coined (by me) as "useful leisure".
"What the hell does that mean?", you ask. A useful leisure gift can be defined as any item that's practical, but also carries pleasure. For example, a new pair of yoga pants could count as useful leisure. It might not seem like the most wacky, "fun" gift in the world, but the recipient might really love them and use them. Other examples: magazine subscriptions, a good sweater/fleece/something cozy, a note card set, gift card to Whole Foods, new pair of sneakers. You get the idea.
Set gift maximums
Whether in cost or quantity, setting a gift maximum is the best way to keep holiday gifting under control. As long as no one breaks the rules, this assures that everyone is getting (and giving) fewer items which means that ultimately less money is being spent, less clutter is being accumulated, and overall the gifts you are giving will be that much more memorable. Win win.
Does your family or group of friends still give gifts? Do you set maximums? What's your approach or, dare I say, strategy to holiday gift giving? This (somewhat) converted minimalist would love to hear.