It’s the most wonderful time of the year…



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If you’re like most people, you’ve spent a lot of December shopping (or thinking about shopping). Something clicks this time of year, where many people have an inexplicable urge to splurge on $30 socks for their mothers, or pick up bottles of body mist for every distant relative. Maybe it’s good marketing, great sales tactics, but there’s actually something deeper at play: it’s the one time of year people get in the mood to give–and give and give.

My assistant, Melanie, did something a little different this year. She challenged herself to follow a strict shopping pledge. Essentially, every gift she purchases for someone she knows has to also positively impact a stranger. She’s attempting to infuse the spirit of giving even more deeply into her holiday purchases by adding in a whole lot of direct donations to charities on behalf of her own gift recipients, and purchase items made by artisans from developing nations. She realized that, with just a small shift in her intentions, how much good could be done with the money she was already planning to spend this month. (You can read more about it at

So today, let’s write about gifts.

How do you approach gift giving? Does your family write up lists of who wants what so everyone gets exactly what they ask for? Do you make anything special by hand? Bake a boatload of cookies? Who are your favorite people to shop for? Write about your shopping style: do you start looking for gifts around Halloween? Do you do all your shopping on Black Friday? Do you wait until the very last possible moment? Do you like to get everything all at once, or spread it out? Do you give back to your community during the holidays? Do you donate toys to less fortunate children? Do you wrap them elaborately with shiny new paper and perfect bows, or roll them up in the funny papers?

Take ten minutes to consider your own gift giving habits, past and present. Go! Write! (…and then go finish your shopping, if you’re still procrastinating.)


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