We’ve all been there. A birthday of a friend or loved one is fast approaching, and you haven’t got a clue what to give. The itunes gift cards are getting old, and, besides, you really feel like you want to give something with more meaning. As you get older you realize that you have less time to get to know the people who are close to you. Making the effort to select a gift that will be truly appreciated is a good place to strengthen that connection.
So, where do you start? First, look at this whole gift giving idea as a fun and creative process. Here are a few ideas to make this journey easier:
1. Think, of gift giving as an “art”, and not a chore.
2. Prepare to play, that means relax, and have fun.
3. Picture the Gift Recipient.
4. What do you know about him/her?
5. Don’t panic.
6. Pictures friends and family members of the Gift Recipient.
7. Call them—yes, you actually need to pick up the phone.
8. Ask for ideas—what is she/he into these days.
9. Expand your ideas of traditional gifts
10. Does she like concerts?
11. Tennis—lessons, anyone?
12. Not getting any help from the family & friends?
13. Look at this as an opportunity.
14. Call (or email) the gift recipient directly. Make Contact.
15. Have a pen & note pad handy.
15. You are just saying, “Hi, what’s new, what’s been going on.”
16. If this makes you feel awkward, that’s okay; you are just out of practice.
17. Don’t worry about blowing your cover—just listen.
18. Focus on the tone of their voice, do they sound happy, sad or nervous.
19. Pick up on these clues, and ask questions.
20. Take notes if your memory is not so hot.
21. Forget why you called (the gift), just act interested.
If you followed this list of instructions, congratulations, you’ve made a bona fide connection. Look over your notes for clues. If she did not give a direct clue, search your notes for something hidden. If something was bothering her, think of a way to make her feel better. Trust your instincts, and focus on what would put a smile on her face. Include a card, which mentions something that came up in your conversation. These are the best kinds of gifts. She will know you were listening and that you care.
So, what if you were unable to get in touch with ANY friends and family of the gift recipient? What if you were unable to get in touch with your friend or loved one, directly? What if you waited too long and you don’t have time? All good questions; there are ways around this. For more advice on this subject, stay tuned. The follow-up to this article will be coming soon. Until then, make connections, focus on others, and give from the heart.
Copywright 2007, Avenstar Enterprises, Inc.—Our Inner Source