I’ve already written about my love of opportunity shops and I rarely buy a gift new (for myself or my friends)
When I do buy new, I usually wait until I can find out from the recipient what they need or want, and buy that for them. Because I think most of us in the first world have too much stuff.
Way, way, way too much stuff. So why clutter up someone’s life with something else they don’t need and probably don’t want. Why make them feel bad, if not eventually but inevitably when your gift gets put on to a shelf never to be used again.
So here’s another gift giving. If you don’t want or don’t like to go-used.
Think about giving someone in a developing country a goat or some chickens, a well or books for a library. Donate to a food bank, buy school books or pay for tutoring for someone who needs it in your own community. Support a micro-banking effort, an orphanage or efforts to stop child trafficking.
I’m not going to link to the organisations that do this. You will know what sort of organisations you want to support. Some people like non-government organisations, some like church affiliated organisations. Do a search on-line for your favourite and find out what they offer.
If you don’t have spare cash, donate your time (to a worthy cause or to your friends and family). Help someone in their garden. Offer to cook a meal for someone who likes to eat but doesn’t like to cook. Take someone who doesn’t (or can’t get out on their own) for a stroll.
These gifts without a price tag are priceless to the recipients.
And while you decided to do this to do good, you will also discover that when you do something that helps someone, on the other side of the world or on the other side of your fence, you will feel good. I guarantee it.