Singapore – We’re nearing the end of the first month of 2021 (congratulations to all of us for making it this far!), and the next big holiday on the scene is Valentine’s Day.
This year, there are many reasons to make this holiday of love better and more poignant than before. Commemorate Valentine’s Day 2021 by celebrating all kinds of love—romantic love, friendship and the undying bond of family. We’ve compiled a list of different, meaningful ways you can show appreciation for those you love—beyond cards, flowers, chocolates, and the usual presents.
2020 was a different kind of year, and it brought with it the unexpected—a highly contagious virus that has taken and affected lives in every corner of the world. With that kind of disruption come big changes in lifestyle and perspective, and how we think about those whom we love is no exception.
From handcrafting presents versus buying them, gifting people with experiences, helping them achieve goals, or contributing to causes they care about, there are thoughtful ways you can show people love and gratitude.
Make, not buy
Handmade presents make delightful gifts, for it’s not only about the present itself but the time and effort that went into its crafting. However, it’s important to consider what you are actually making and giving people. Take into consideration their needs and try to make something for them that will contribute positively to their lives and not just add clutter and take up space.
For example, if your grandmother has been craving her favourite meal but cannot eat out in a restaurant, why not craft the dish for her and serve it in the comfort of her own home? Don’t forget to decorate with flowers or a little card; touches like that can turn the ordinary into an extraordinary experience.
Experiences over things
Material possessions can break or get lost over time, but experiences will always be cherished and remembered. As a present, it can be something for the person to experience on their own (like a full day’s worth of pampering at the spa) or something you can do while spending time together. The important thing to take in consideration is the interests of your loved one.
My partner once gifted his father with an experience of driving a race car on a track, with a certified instructor, for the day. His dad, a certified motor head with a penchant for driving fast cars, could not have been more thrilled. He was on cloud nine the whole day, and now, years later, he still talks about the experience with gusto and happiness.
Help them achieve their goals
Giving someone the gift of your time and effort is unparalleled when it comes to the hierarchy of gift-giving. This Valentine’s Day, is there anything you can do to help the people you love meet their achievements? Do you have skills that could help them?
Perhaps you have a friend who is overwhelmed and needs help moving houses, a mother wants to finally learn how to navigate the internet, a son who wants to learn how to drive or a significant other wants to get physically fitter. Offering your time, care and effort to help them achieve their personal goals may just be the best present you can give them.
Contribute to a cause they care about
What to give to someone who has everything they need and doesn’t want for much? Another idea is to contribute to causes they hold near and dear to their hearts. These causes could be anything from fighting for animal rights to ocean conservation.
Ask your loved one how you can help contribute (and it doesn’t have to be in a monetary fashion) to a cause that they care about. It might mean engaging in volunteer work with them or helping them with a fundraiser or a petition. Show them that because you care about them, you care about what they hold dear, too.
Here are more ideas on non-material gifts and experiences you can give that won’t add clutter to your loved ones’ homes and lives:
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