The Right and Wrong Reasons To Give Gifts

Well, it’s that time again.  It’s the holiday season and, assuming the world doesn’t end on December 21st, we will be expected to give gifts to each other this year.  I want to talk about some of the situations that can accompany gift giving.  They always say that it’s better to give than to receive (and it is), but that is only true if you are giving or receiving for the right reasons.

Some people give gifts because they feel obligated to.  This isn’t a good way to feel, especially if you’re in a situation where you’re needy enough to think that another person liking you is contingent upon you giving them a gift.  This idea can manifest itself like “I have to make sure I give them a good enough gift to keep their interest.”  If you find yourself feeling that way, you should probably take a step back and look at the situation.  You certainly don’t want to be spending your time with someone who likes you because you give them gifts (or any form of spending money on them).  You know, there’s a word for someone who gives you their time and attention in exchange for your money…

In an ideal situation, all gifts are by choice.  I give my friends and family gifts because I want to, not because I have to.  I’m giving my sister a limited edition… (actually, my sister reads this blog, so I’m not saying!).  I’m giving my father a pistol safe.  I’m giving my mother one of those robot vacuum cleaners that goes around and cleans your floor automatically, and I’m making sure that I buy it from somewhere that allows returns just in case it ends up not working… cuz come on… is that actually gonna work?  But regardless, I’m getting these things for these people because I want to, and because I think they will like them, not because I feel like I have to.

The reverse of the above situation is using people’s insecurities to get them to get you thinks.  A lot of people do this, and it’s not just for presents.  How about a woman who will only go on a date with a guy if the guy pays?  Think about that: why is she spending time with him?  Is it because she enjoys his company, or is it because she’s getting a free meal?

I’m confident that all the women I date enjoy spending time with me.  I know this because I don’t pay for them.

If you find yourself in a situation like this, step back and ask what would happen if you didn’t get them anything?

I don’t care if my friends and family don’t get me anything.  In fact, I tell them not to.  I like them because they’re cool people, not because they get me stuff.

Of course, if they get me something, I won’t complain.