Self, Sex

Can't Buy Me Love: A Gift Giving Guide

gift from the heart

Gift giving — Groan

It doesn't matter if you're in a new relationship or you've been married for decades. Choosing a gift that will bring a smile to your partner's lips can be difficult and fraught with traps. 5 Tips To Help You Gift When You're A New Couple

Some people spend a lot of money that they don't really have attempting to buy the "perfect" gift for their love. Others run out to the nearest store and pick the first thing they see, and some completely skip giving gifts to their partner — the stress of picking out something that's just right is too much. The results of all of these methods of giving a gift are probably not what was desired.

Instead of a gleeful reaction and a big kiss and hug of thanks, the results of giving gifts in these ways can leave both people feeling resentful, disappointed, unimportant, taken for granted, and less connected than before.

Let's be clear here ...

It's not the gift that makes your partner love you or desire you. It's not the gift that brings your mate closer to you. You simply cannot buy love — if a close and healthy relationship is what you're looking for. 3 Mantras Happy Couples Say To Themselves Every. Single. Day.

At the same time, when you pick out and give a gift with care, consideration, and maybe even a sense of adventure and fun, you can enhance the love you have. The process of giving gifts to your love can be a vehicle for more romance, more connection, and more passion.

It's gotta have heart.

Be honest with yourself. If you're only buying your partner a gift because you feel like you have to or because you are worried that he or she will be angry with you or maybe even leave you if you don't, stop right there.

Make sure you're approaching this whole gift-giving process with genuine feeling. A gift given with resentment or guilt is going to fall flat. It could drive your partner even further away from you. 10 Ways To Have A Loving Holiday Season

If there are unresolved tensions or disagreements between you and your mate, take the time to address what's going on and look for new solutions you may not have considered before. Don't use a gift to try to "make up" for your relationship mistakes.

Instead, take care of the conflict and make amends for your mistakes. Next, invite yourself to shift your attitude about giving your partner a gift. Reach within yourself and make a choice about what you will give from a place of genuine care and love.

Take the pressure off in terms of how much you think you should spend and focus in on how you feel about your partner and also what you think he or she might enjoy. In other words, give a gift from the heart. 7 Inexpensive Holiday Gift Ideas

Take a risk.

Get creative about the gift you choose. You can really wow your partner with something you made by hand or a very simple, yet powerful and emotional gift. 

Think about how it feels when you are close and intimate with your partner. As you glow in those feelings, brainstorm some possible gifts you might purchase or make. Browse unique or independent shops (online or those in your community) to get ideas.

If you've always given jewelry, clothing, perfume, gift cards, etc. to your partner, encourage yourself to take a risk. Pay attention to your hesitations, but don't allow them to hold you back. Be wise about your budget (your partner is not going to be happy with that expensive jewelry if you have maxed out the credit card to buy it) and keep in mind your love's preferences. 17 Holiday Gifts Women Really Want

Consider giving yourself!

Remember, the goal of giving gifts is to enhance your connection. What better way to do that than to give of yourself.

You can get sexy with this idea or you can use it as a way to show your partner that you're really listening to him or her. For example, if she frequently asks you to help more with the housework, get on your computer, create a book of "coupons" for specific household tasks that you are actually willing to do, print it off and give that.

If he complains that you never seem to have energy for sex, surprise him with a weekend alone, either in a hotel or even in your own home — just the two of you with no distractions or things to drain your energy and time. 10 Ways To Show Yourself Love This Holiday Season

Giving gifts to your partner doesn't have to be stressful. It can be a way for you to tap into the love and appreciation you have for your partner and to express those feelings in a symbolic way. Set aside your worries that your gift will be a bust and open up to the possibilities.

Have fun with this and, remember, when you give a gift from the the heart, it benefits you as well.

Susie and Otto Collins are relationship coaches and authors who help couples communicate, connect and create the relationship they desire.  Click here to get their free ebook, Passionate Heart-Lasting Love.