What a Minimalist Really Wants: a guide to gift giving.

It’s that time of year we adore — holidays, loved-ones and gift giving. This season is supposed to be the most relaxed and easy-going for individuals, but for minimalists it’s the most stressful.

I’m speaking from experience when I say I both look forward to and dread this part of the year. On the one hand I get to spend time with loved ones, but on the other hand I’m bombarded with gifts that I either don’t need or want. I know that gifting is done out of love, but getting things that I didn’t explicitly ask for or hint at wanting is just a burden. 

I have a feeling that all my minimalists out there are nodding their heads when I say this. To avoid this situation happening this year to a minimalist you know and adore, then here’s a guide to gift giving for minimalists. 

Explicitly ask 

I particularly like when family members just ask what I would want as a gift. This ensures that they don’t waste their money on something I’m just going to give away or donate and that I’d actually enjoy it. 

Buy something that is a necessity or known habit of theirs

Instead of buying clothes, perfumes or knick-knacks, buy something that the minimalist is without a doubt going to use such as coffee gift cards (if they’re a coffee lover like me), gift card to their favorite small business, bathroom necessities (i.e. toilet paper), kitchen, or laundry necessities. 

This may seem weird at first, but I have plenty of family members that do this. I’d rather have something I know that I need gifted to me rather than a shirt that I’m never going to wear. 

Gift an experience

One thing minimalists value over acquiring material possessions is experiences. This is probably one of the best things you can give a minimalist.

You can buy them tickets to their favorite band, pay for lessons they’ve been wanting to take (i.e. surfing), pay for a year’s subscription to a service they use (i.e. Apple Music), the options are endless. 

Something hand-made and sentimental 

One of my favorite things to get gifted is hand-made items. On my birthday last year, my best friend wrote a letter to me expressing how much I meant to her and it is something I still value ‘til this day. 

Get creative. Something that you put thought into over something you just found at a store is going to be worth and valued more to a loved-one, especially a minimalist. 

Quality time and attention 

Last but not least is quality time. Time and attention is our biggest commodity so if you give that to a minimalist then you’re in good standing.

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