That’s why we’re starting early to help you tackle the season step by step — and save time, money and stress. If you follow our Guerrilla Guide each week, we promise that by the end of December, you’ll be outside on the skating rink instead of stressing inside the shopping mall.
According to our Facebook poll, 78% of LearnVesters were already thinking about holiday gifts as early as last week. So, for this issue of the Guerrilla Guide, we bring you the newest way to sort out your holiday gift list.
WEEK 2: YOUR CREATIVE, BUDGET-FRIENDLY GIFT LIST
As you make your list this year, we want you to think about holiday giving a little differently.
Before you start assigning dollar amounts to everyone and hunting around for products to buy and wrap, first consider whether the best gift for them is a thing with a price tag. According to the Five Love Languages, defined by marriage counselor Dr. Gary Chapman, people receive messages of love very differently, and only one of these categories involves actual physical gifts. Some people would rather receive acts of service or quality time instead.
Read on to find out more.
In holiday-speak, the Five Love Languages can help you figure out who in your life responds best to which type of gift.
The Five Love Languages are:
Words of affirmation
Acts of service
Don’t know your own love language — let alone which one your friends and family speak? “You can pick up cues about your friend or family member’s inclinations during everyday conversations,” explains Dr. Natalie Robinson Garfield, psychotherapist and author of “The Sense Connection”. Or you can always take the Love Languages quiz together. But in case you’re pressed for time, we’ve compiled this handy guide to help you decode who speaks what — and plot the best gift-giving strategy.
This holiday, limit buying “stuff” to just the people who want it, and you’ll have the best gift-giving season ever, in terms of green friendliness, time savings, thoughtfulness and money.
Words of Affirmation
In sum: These are word folks: People who feel loved through words of affirmation want to hear you say you love them, or what they mean to you. They love sweet messages, notes, letters and spoken words of appreciation.
Signs your loved one speaks this language: This is probably the person who’s good at expressing how much you mean to her. (We commonly express affection in the language we’d like to hear.) People who speak this language also generally enjoy using words—they’re those who tend to explain verbally rather than physically. They might respond ecstatically to a nice compliment.
Great gifts: This is the type who will linger over the words of a card (sometimes more so than the gift), so for a words of affirmation lover, never leave out the card! Spend more time crafting a thoughtful sentiment — the more specific the better—and tell her exactly how much she means to you and why you value her. If you want to forgo a physical gift, this person may just as well appreciate a beautiful card, a meaningful letter or — if you have the creative chops — a poem.
Acts of Service
In sum: Dad did always say you know your true friends by who’s at the other end of the couch when you move. These are the people who view helpful and service-oriented acts as signs you care: running errands, making a meal, helping out with a task.
Signs that your loved one speaks this language: This person feels connected through helpful actions, and is often volunteering to take things off your plate when you’re overwhelmed — and if you do something nice for him like grab him a cup of coffee or walk his dog, he feels more gratitude than if you had paid someone to do those things.
Great gifts: This person might not appreciate a physical gift as much as your doing something nice for him, such as cooking his favorite dinner, helping him throw a party, or assisting with a major work project. Consider one of those homemade “coupon books” for this receiver — filled with freebies for doing laundry, taking out the trash or bringing him breakfast in bed. If you do decide to buy this person a gift, consider spending less on something that has an act of service wrapped up in it — i.e. get a bag of gourmet coffee beans and attach a note saying that you’ll bring him a freshly brewed cup every morning.