Gifts that Matter. Research shows that giving experiences make us happier than things do. There’s more research that shows a huge factor to our happiness is stress management. So why not give someone the gift of getting their shit together?
In a recent segment aired on NPR, relevant in the midst of wedding season, science correspondent Shankar Vedantam reports on a study involving the psychology of giving wedding gifts.He comments on the “conflicting forces” guests are presented with, stating “ we want the gifts we give to please the people getting married, but we also want the gift to reflect well on us.”
Morgan Ward, a marketing professor at the Southern Methodist University created the study after reflecting on her own experience putting together her wedding registry. After commenting on her effort to put together a list of gifts, she says “… but the people who didn’t want to purchase from the registry were the people closest to me.”
The idea of giving experiences rather than things isn’t a new concept. “One of the enemies of happiness is adaption” explains psychologist Dr. Thomas Gilovich. That new crockpot or bar tool set may seem exciting at first, but just like any other object in your home, they soon begin to fade into the background.
Experiences, like a trip to the stunning Machu Picchu in Peru, tickets to a weekend-long music festival or contributing to college tuition are things that stick with you. These are the things that make the memories you spontaneously remember while doing the laundry that make you smile, cringe, or laugh while providing that little reminder of what really matters.
Gifts that help us to manage stress might also be those that bring the greatest joy. According to Livestrong, three out of the top ten causes of stress are finances, health, and the death of a loved one. A survey in 2011 conducted by psychologist and self-help author Robert Epstein, reports that around 25% of our happiness depends on how well we manage stress.
According to his survey, the best way we can manage stress is through planning. In Epstein’s words, “ fighting stress before it even starts, planning things rather than letting them happen.”
This proves making a plan for the days, years, and decade to come support your overall happiness itself, it’s a quick and easy strategy that helps you allow more happiness for yourself and your loved ones.
GYST has created a prepaid estate plan so you and your family are covered for years to come. All necessary documents are drafted and finalized by an attorney who works with you from start to finish.
So next time you’re faced with the question of what to get a friend or family for a wedding, baby shower, or just because, give them the best gift you’ve likely never thought of, The Gift of GYST.
Whether you’re gifting to an individual, a couple, or your family, the package comes with your own personalized note and helpful nudges and reminders to get it done.
Gifts That Give Back
Society B – An online store that sells beautiful, fair trade goods and give 10% of their profit to a different featured charity every month.
One Hope Wine – OHW provides a wide array of affordable gift boxes that each contribute to a variety of different causes from funding therapy for a child with autism, to helping a shelter animal find a forever home. It’s ethical. It’s wine. It’s the perfect match.
MAMA HOPE – Their Human Centered Development model brings together social entrepreneurs, NGOs and many other organizations to ensure communities have access to the holistic, 360° solutions they need to support sustainable growth.
We.org – WE empower people to change the world. WE make this change through our work at home, abroad and through our social enterprise.
This blog post is by writer, journalist and filmmaker, Lyric Weiss, for GYST.com.