WHEN YOU’RE LATE – OR EARLY
When your gift is going to arrive or be given early (Overachievers, raise a mighty “Yawp!”) or later than the occasion (Slackers, fist bump!), your gift will stand out – mostly because it will be the only one in view of the recipient at that moment.
Sometimes your gift's timing is out of your hands, especially with the current, unfortunate state of shipping these days! Always send out good vibes to the shipping fairies and offer big prayers to the Man Upstairs.
Without 3 or 10 or 30 other gifts to cast your thoughtfulness in shadow, you might feel some pressure to have an outstanding gift.
The adjective “outstanding” holds two meanings: 1 – exceptionally good; or 2 – remaining to be paid, done or dealt with. Depending on if you are the overachiever or the slacker, either definition applies :)
How you define “outstanding” may be entirely subjective.
Does outstanding require that you obviously spent a lot of money on the gift? Or does it need to appear you spent a lot of time on the gift – either making it yourself or thinking of it? Or does it need to be obvious that you gave much thought to it because you ordered it so far in advance?
Whether you are an overachieving gifter who is meticulously organized in the purchase and well-timed delivery of your generosity or you don’t feel alive without the rush of being down to the time-wire, your gift can be outstanding (both exceptional and still needing to be done) without spending a lot of money or time. It will only cost you a bit of thoughtful effort to blow them away with your consideration.
XENIA SOAP BOX
Yes, we are still pushing the adage “It’s not about the gift, it’s about the message.” This is the Xenia Box Soap Box, or rather, the Xenia Soap Box.
Once again, your present has the power to make them feel seen, appreciated, supported, or loved with the message that you send with your gift.
SENDING PROFESSIONAL GIFTS
An obligatory basket of fruit just shipped and delivered with a “Happy Holiday! (signed, your name)” – even cut into cute shapes and arranged, while a delightful treat – doesn’t say or do much to move the relationship forward. Consider this especially for a professional relationship where you are sending or giving such a gift to a client. This low-calorie, visually pleasing gift can be a great gift that doesn’t appear an obligation with a thoughtful message beyond the “Happy (occasion)” shout on the card.
Give some thought to the recipient’s personality or their work or project, and express a genuine compliment in your card that creates a connection between the gift and you and them. Visualize their receiving and reading your note. Will your client smile and nod in appreciation? Will they consider how you see and appreciate them? Will they feel like you know them or notice them as a person and not just a project?
On the personal hand, as a gift experience among friends, the seemingly simplest of gifts accompanied by a message that hits the feels or the funny bone reminds them why you are such an important part of their life – regardless of, or because of, your inaneness!
WORRIED ABOUT YOUR “WORDSMITHING” ABILITY?
Find inspiration around you!
- Google a few words that might include “funny message about friendship,” or “quote about style,” or “wishes for adventure,” or “compliment for a coworker.”
- Consider quotes, messages, or passages you’ve read that have made you feel empowered or appreciated, inspired or given you the giggles. Incorporate a part of them (and give credit) in your message.
- Items you use every day can inspire a gift idea that you can connect to a story or memory – and just tell that story or relive that memory in plain written words.
You don’t have to be Austen or Angelou, Rowling or Orwell. Just be you.
They will hear your “voice” in their mind. And they will feel your sincerity.
In this case, Show, don’t tell doesn’t prevail. The seen gift alone may not (and doesn’t have to be!) impressive. It’s the tiny bit of mental effort and your genuine words that will set your gift and it’s timing to right, make the recipient feel what you want them to feel, and (likely unexpectedly) make you feel like a Gifting Rock Star.
And we know people enthusiastically look forward to rock stars to show up – no matter their arrival punctuality. You can own that title, regardless of your timing.
So … go forth, and gift!