How Do You Pick A Thoughtful Gift?

Gift Receiving” is a love language. But wait … what is a love language?

Gary Chapman, Ph.D., who has extensive experience in marriage counseling and linguistics, develops the concept of love languages. 

In his book, The 5 love languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts, he explains the five unique styles of communication of love:

Words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service, and physical touch. 

Each person can have more than just one love language. You can find more information here:

I love the joy of giving gifts to others because of the following reasons:

  • Many people around me speak that love language – They love to receive gift
  • Giving gifts release endorphins and makes me so happy. I feel happier giving gifts than receiving gift myself.
  • I want to express my love, care, and gratitude to someone important to me
  • I want to surprise someone I love and care about.
  • I purely want to make someone smile.

We always hear people say, “What made the gift special is the thoughts go behind the gift.”

How to select a thoughtful and meaningful gift?

By listening and observing your receiver, here are a few questions you can ask yourself:

  • What would normally make them smile?
  • What would calm and relax them?
  • What do they need at the moment?
  • What can you do to help them simplify their lives?
  • How can you help to solve their problems at hand?
  • How would you help them grow?

What would normally make them smile?

Think about their hobbies? Here are a few examples:

  • If they like yoga, consider getting them a mat, a bag, or yoga kits that they would always need and use.
  • If they like dogs, consider getting them anything from dog treats, dog accessories, cut dog apparels, to jewelry printed with the face of their favorite dog/breed on it which they can wear.

What would calm and relax them?

From your observation of the receiver or what they have mentioned before, what are their favorite ways of relaxing?

  • If they like to take a bath to help them relax, consider getting them some bath bombs, scented bath gels, or candles that can light up around the bathtub to create the best bathing experience.
  • If they like to listen to music, consider getting them a superb quality speaker or noise cancelling headphones.
  • If they really like spa and massage, you can consider giving them coupons of you giving them a massage (self-made massage coupons from you!). Or you can get them gift certificate of their favorite spa salon.
  • If they like to walk in nature to calm their mind, consider buying them something that they can bring to the nature, e.g. thermos bottles, sun hats, hiking accessories, etc.

What do they need at the moment?

What are their immediate needs at the moment? What are they going through right now in their stage of lives?

  • If they just got a new pet, consider giving them some pet toys, accessories, or pets essentials.
  • If they just gave birth to a baby, consider giving them new born apparels, toys, baby essentials, or something that would make their new parenting lives easier.

What can we help to simplify their lives by increasing productivity or efficiency?

Is the receiver very busy and has many things to handle with little time? Are they juggling with home (kids and chores) and work?

  • If they need to handle many things at work or home, but still want to cook healthy meals for their family, consider getting them kitchen tools and gadgets that would help her prepare a hearty meal with less time.
  • If they want to drink fresh fruit juice in the office but don’t want to put a big noisy juicer there, consider getting them a portable mini juicer that they can bring with them every day.

What are the challenges or issues that they have been busy solving lately? 

Have they mentioned to you the challenges they have in life? Or have you noticed that they have difficulties with something that they do?

  • If they have mentioned that they need to lose some weights, consider getting them some exercise accessories or gym membership that would encourage them to exercise and make their exercise experience pleasant.
  • If they really like coffee but they are in between jobs and would not be economic to go out for coffee everyday anymore, consider getting them a coffee shop certificate, or a coffee machine with sufficient capsules supply so that they can coffee themselves at home.

How would you help them grow? 

Personal growth is important. Whether it is physical, emotional, intellectual, mental, or spiritual. Without growing, we are all falling behind gradually.

  • If your children or best friend’s children have an interest in science and want to learn more about it, consider getting them some STEM activities kit like experiment kits, STEM books, etc. Check here for gifts for girls and check here for gift for boys.
  • If they want to grow a healthier lifestyle, consider getting them kitchen tools to prepare more healthy meals at home. Consider giving a book to help them embark on a journey of a healthy lifestyle.

Last Comments

In Summary, giving gifts is an enjoyable experience. In order to get a thoughtful and meaningful gift for someone, the best is to exercise your observation and try to know the person better.

However, if you do not know the gift receiver very well or cannot think of anything to get them, here are a few suggestions:

  • Talk to a mutual friend to find out what the gift receiver likes
  • Get them something that is generic enough but are practical at the same time.
  • Consider getting them a gift certificate if you don’t know anyone who knows them or really can’t figure out what they like.
  • Last, talk to the gift receiver yourself and try to know them better (but of course, you would not want to give away that you are preparing them a gift).

In the end, if the receiver doesn’t really like your gift but knows that you have put so much thoughts into getting them a gift, they would really appreciate your heart.

If you need more ideas about what gifts to give your loved one, please check out my gift recommendation articles.