How to Conquer Your Gifting Plan with Grace
I am so thrilled that it is the final month of the year and that the holidays are just around the corner. The best part of this season for me is going home to snowy Minnesota to spend cozy days with my family and friends. I'd love to know your favorite thing about this season, too!
With it officially being December and the stress of planning hitting us all, I thought it would be fun to share a little about how I go about creating and executing my gifting plan and keeping my head on straight while doing it...and actually enjoying it quite a lot even.
First of all, I want to make a statement here. Gifting is a fun and festive part of the holiday season but it is by no means what this season is all about. Gifts should be given from the heart and with meaning, not with the intention of spending a great deal of money to buy someone's love.
If you keep this in mind, you will have a fun, creative, and spirit-boosting time creating your gifting plan this year! Here are a few steps to help you get started:
Step 1: Create A Master List
My first (and most important!) suggestion is to create a list of everyone you hope to give a gift to this season. This simple beginning piece of organization can save you a TON of stress in the long term.
Create a list with each person's name, a rough estimate budget for their gift, some space for jotting down ideas, space for writing things down as you purchase them, and a check box to mark when they are completely accounted for.
This may seem like a lot, but I promise, each piece is important and can save you a lot of headache when on December 23rd you can't quite remember if you have bought anything for Suzie yet or not and you are frantically pacing the shelves of Target for a last minute addition.
If you feel overwhelmed, try out my Graceful Gifting Planner...it is free and has saved me a lot of time and worry this year!
Step 2: Brainstorm
Now this step may seem like a no-brainer but sometimes it is easy to skip this incredibly important brainstorming session before you head off to shop.
Ideally, you will want to keep a list of ideas for those you know you want to buy for all year round. I don't know how many times I have thought of brilliant gift ideas for my Dad but then December comes around and I can't remember a single one of them. Write things down! Just small notes can jot your memory when the time to buy comes around.
If you haven't thought that far ahead (which let's be honest, most of us don't!) never fear! Just spend a good 30 minutes thinking about the people on your list and taking down a few notes about the ideas that come to mind.
Using your resources is encouraged! I find tons of inspiration from looking at specific people's Pinterest boards of things they would love or just to get a vibe for what they adore. It helps to think about people's hobbies, interests, professions, families and sentiments.
The best gifts are the ones which you can tell had a great deal of thought put into them. An Amazon gift card is great and all but it sure doesn't say, "I know you really well and care about who you are as a person."
Step 3: Execute with Grace
This is the part of the process that I sometimes struggle the most with. I have all these great and meaningful ideas...but finding the real deal or anything good enough within my price range can be a nightmare.
Don't stress! One thing I have learned about December is that it can be one of the most stressful months if you allow it to be. Let things flow easily. Take your time and start early so that you are not rushed to find something, "good enough."
If you are feeling stressed, stuck, anxious, or annoyed while shopping, go home and try again another day or time. It isn't worth being upset and this time of year is all about being happy and festive...not out of your mind frustrated.
Be strategic and purchase what you can online or at local shops. If you aren't sure about something you see, write down the idea and come back to it another day. You will have WAY more fun browsing all the fun holiday shops if you don't put the unnecessary weight on your shoulders.
Step 4: Sprinkle with Style
The gift giving doesn't end when the perfect things have been found! Don't forget to have fun and get festive with presentation. One of my favorite parts of gift giving is wrapping things up in the most adorable and creative ways.
Get creative with your gifts if you are feeling stuck. Don't force it. Maybe there isn't the perfect item in the store but you have a great idea for a homemade gift. The important thing is to remember that you are gifting out of love and care...not obligation. Gifts of obligation are never good and don't make you feel good either.
Cards and nice meaningful letters can go a long way! Last year I gave a heart felt letter to everyone along with just a small homemade gift and they all loved them just as much as an they would an expensive item. The holidays are about connection, relationships, and love...not the stuff.
Give from the heart and those receiving will never be disappointed...and you will feel filled with happiness and joy as the holidays are meant to bring about!
I hope this was helpful for your gift planning organization and also with perpetuating your happiness through the holiday shuffle. Check out my free Graceful Gifting Planner for inspiration and organization. Remember...the holidays are cheerful, festive, and filled with love and if you aren't feeling that...it is time to make an adjustment back to happiness!
Sending loads of holiday cheer and coziness to you, lovelies!