But greater happiness is not closely correlated with getting things. It’s our experiences that increase our happiness over time. And many experiences are free. Below are suggestions for giving this season that don’t cost anything and just may be the gifts that are remembered long after the hustle and bustle of the holidays has passed.
Give the gift of your time
Soup kitchens and charities can always use spare hands, but so can people in our day to day lives.
Give the gift of tradition
When you think back to your childhood, it is likely that you remember specific traditions, more than a particular gift and that it is these traditions that make the holidays seems special. Sharing customs and traditions with others will make the holidays memorable and special in a way that no store bought gift can.
Give the gift of kindness and generosity
Although we all feel we should be happy and joyful during this season, many are stressed, overloaded with demands and expectations and feeling frazzled. An act of kindness or generosity can lift someone’s spirits during a difficult day and make you feel good for contributing to their happiness.
These are just a few suggestions for making this time of year meaningful and joyful without the need to spend money. Please share any ways that you give to others, without spending, in the comments section.
Senior and friend photo available from Shutterstock.
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From Psych Central's World of Psychology:
Best of Our Blogs: December 20, 2011 | World of Psychology (December 20, 2011)
Last reviewed: 20 Dec 2011