What's Your Gifting Style?

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There are as many gifting styles as there are people, and once you take into account various cultural gift-giving practices and traditions (not to mention social expectations), you'll realize there's no end to the factors that affect not only what we buy, but how we decide what to buy, and even how we present it to the recipient!

Just for fun, see if you can identify yourself or someone you know in any of these gifting style descriptions. You may find that your gifting style is a combination of one or more descriptions. Above all, you just might be surprised at what you discover about yourself!

Lazy.jpg The Lazy Gifter
Whether due to procrastination, a lack of creativity, or a sheer lack of interest, the Lazy Gifter just can't be bothered when it comes to researching and shopping for gifts. There are just too many other things to do! While the Lazy Gifter usually has every noble intention of purchasing a gift way ahead of time, and may even set up online or electronic calendars and alerts to remind him of the important day, the actual act of finding a gift is usually put off until the next day...and then the next day...until finally, the special occasion has arrived and the Lazy Gifter still has no clue what to get! The Lazy Gifter will either just call with well wishes for a Happy Birthday or Merry Christmas, mail a card (e-cards are even better), or may even spring for a gift card if they are feeling generous (or guilty) enough.
Thoughtful.jpg The Thoughtful Gifter
The Thoughtful Gifter takes gift-buying very seriously and will approach the task with all the gravity of a widow shopping for her husband's casket. He wants to ensure that you will actually enjoy and get plenty of use out of your gift (not to mention make sure that his money's not wasted!).
The Thoughtful Gifter listens intently to what you have to say, waiting for you to unwittingly provide clues to what you really want or need. They may even keep a small notepad handy to record your inadvertent hints or jot down a gadget they saw at the mall that they think you'll love.
You never have to worry about excitedly ripping open your gift only to reveal a ridiculous mounted and varnished frog from Mexico or a ten pound sack of Himalayan rice; you know when you receive a present from the Thoughtful Gifter that underneath the exquisitely wrapped paper is an item that will truly benefit and enhance your life!
Insecure.jpg Ol' Cheap -n- Sneak
This type of gifter is basically insecure about their inability to either choose a “proper” gift or even afford one. They usually feel their gift is inadequate and fears the recipient will agree. Why else would they buy earrings from Wal-Mart and try to pass them off as baubles from Tiffany & Co? They may even buy an inexpensive, flimsy toy for a young relative and present it in the colorful bag from a popular toy company. Forget about a gift receipt from this person; you'll never see one!
Ol' Cheap-n- Sneak never considers that with a little forethought and creativity, they could dream up their own handmade gifts or at least think of various ways to dress up an inexpensive gift without being deceptive.
Question.jpg The Rambo Gifter
The Rambo Gifter is known for using aggressive, military-style tactics to extract the information they need from the recipient, mainly, “Did they really enjoy the gift? Have they even used it yet? Is that painting hanging up in the living room like they said it would be?”
Rambo Gifters are often very generous individuals, easily showering gifts on those they love. However, they are known to pressure their gift recipients and require that the gifts be enjoyed under their conditions; it's not unheard of for the Rambo gifter to anxiously call the recipient the very next day or even later on that night to find out if they've tried it out yet. Instead of allowing the recipient to enjoy the gift at his or her own leisure, they will often express disappointment and extreme aggravation if the recipient hasn't even opened the box yet. They've even been known to ambush the recipient at home just to see if that vase is on display or that painting prominently placed above the mantel. They will sometimes resort to intimidation by threatening to never purchase another gift for the recipient if they don't appreciate what they've already gotten!
Although Rambo Gifters typically buy awesome presents, their pushiness sometimes makes the recipient dread and resent the whole gift-giving process.
Confused.jpg The Approval-Seeking Gifter
The Approval-Seeking Gifter usually has a general idea of what they want to buy, but is not quite sure if the recipient will like it. Other times they have absolutely no idea what to get and just needs the green light from the recipient's most trusted relatives or confidantes before they make the purchase. This actually isn't such a bad idea; after all, sometimes the best suggestions of what to buy for a receiver often come from that person's mom or best friend.
Sometimes the Approval-Seeking Gifter waffles on deciding what to get, especially if there is no one around to endorse their decision; they'll let insecurity cloud their judgment, much like Ol' Cheap-n-Sneak but with less nefarious intentions. If they have time, they will delay any purchase until they can find someone reliable to endorse it. Otherwise, the threat of time running out will force the Approval-Seeking Gifter to make their own decision about what to buy.
Relaxed.jpg The Play-it-safe Gifter
No matter what the occasion, the Play-it-safe Gifter never breaks a sweat, never feels any anxiety about gift-giving because they already know what they are going to buy and doesn't think twice about it. They love to make the gift-giving process as painless as possible, so they resort to tried and true crowd-pleasers time and time again. They know their sister likes scented lotions, candles, and body sprays, and they never fail to purchase those same items (and sometimes the exact same fragrance) for any special event. A quick jaunt to the local Bath and Body Works takes care of her gift, and then on to their next errand. They know their best friend loves sports, so buying season passes to local sporting events works like a charm, like it does every year.
The Play-it-safe Gifter doesn't want to to risk displeasing the recipient, nor do they wish to spend any more time searching for a gift than they have to! They revere gift cards because it makes the process even easier for them: just plunk the money down and let them decide what to buy. And when all else fails, the Play-it-safe Gifter is not above shelling out cold, hard cash. They know everyone appreciates money, so it's a win-win situation for everyone involved.
Thriftyidea.jpg The Chronic Re-gifter
The Chronic Re-gifter has mastered this most controversial of gifting quagmires and is not ashamed of it! Long ago, the Chronic Re-gifter acknowledged the fact that receiving abominable gifts is a natural part of the gifting process and adopted the insightful adage, “One man's trash is another man's treasure.” They have no qualms about keeping detailed lists of the date, occasion, and source of the unwanted gift to make sure they don't give it back to the original gifter!
While others struggle to understand the philosophical underpinnings of regifting and are in a perpetual quandary of “should I or shouldn't I?”, the Chronic Re-gifter wastes no such time. When they receive a less-than-ideal present, they immediately think of someone who could put it to better use, and passes it along. Depending on their relationship with the recipient, they may take the time to gift-wrap the item and pass it off as an original purchase just for that special person! More often than not, however, they will tell their friend where they got the present from, why they don't like it, and unapologetically offer it to anyone who's interested. If there are no takers, the Chronic Re-gifter will donate the item to a charitable organization.
Careless.jpg The "I'll give it to you when I see you" Gifter
The “I'll give it to you when I see you” Gifter will actually buy a gift for someone and insists on giving it to them in person but distance, conflicting schedules, or some other barrier prevents the two from meeting. As time passes, making sure the recipient gets the present falls lower and lower on the gifter's list of priorities.
After several months or even years have passed, this well-meaning gifter will rediscover the item crammed in the back of the closet and will inexplicably give the gift to someone else or even begin to use it themselves. Of course, the “I'll give it to you when I see you” Gifter could have the item shipped to the recipient, but as a not-so-distant relative of the Lazy Gifter, they just can't be bothered!
Playfulgiver.jpg The Teasing Gifter
The Teasing Gifter has a childlike, mischievous attitude toward gifting; to them, it's nothing but fun, fun, and more fun, and they want to share it with everyone! They love to playfully tantalize the recipient for weeks or even months with statements like, “You'll never guess what I got you for (insert random special occasion here)!” The Teasing Gifter gets their kicks from making the recipient try to guess what the gift could be or giving phony hints to throw the person off and build up anticipation and a sense of mystery around the gift.
The Teasing Gifter typically puts a lot of thought into the presents they buy, and may go to elaborate lengths to make sure the recipient is absolutely clueless up to the moment the wrapping paper is torn to open the gift. Their favorite tactics include disguising gifts by using creative wrapping techniques to enclose small items such as jewelry, gift cards, etc. inside toilet paper or paper towel rolls and wrapping it in gift-paper, or they may place it in a box with something heavier, such as a brick or iron. This keeps the recipient in suspense until the last minute, and by this time the Teasing Gifter is struggling to contain his gleeful laughter.

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