This December, you could be kissing someone new under the mistletoe, if you play your cards right. And if you’re already one-half of a power couple, now’s the time to cuddle in front of a crackling fire and clink your hot cocoa mugs to another unforgettable year. But don’t get too cozy—what’s that you hear? It’s a jingle on the radio, or a local car salesman on the television decked out in a Santa hat, urging you to buy, buy, buy so you can save, save, save! Though they sometimes feel like it, gifts aren’t just an obligation: they’re a way to show appreciation and even reveal unspoken feelings. A well-planned present can say, “You’re more than a friend to me,” or “See? I really was listening!” Then again, a poorly thought-out gift, no matter how nicely wrapped, can mean exactly the opposite. Whatever sentiment is on your mind this year, be sure to say it clearly with this holiday gift guide:
Finding the Perfect Present for…
-An office crush. Gold necklaces, crisp oxford shirts, or perfume are dangerous here! The name of the game is sweet, subtle, and, as far as your boss knows, professional. If you’ve been flirting all year long with a single salesman, gift them a small token of your affection. That doesn’t mean a Chili’s gift card (although that’s not bad for your favorite administrative staffer). If they have a desk ornament collection, add a little something that blends in— it’ll conjure thoughts of you even when you’re away. If there was an inside joke you shared, a coy reference packs a punch, so long as you’re sure they remember the bit!
-A steamy barista. You’ve been getting a little playful sass alongside your frappuccino lately, and want to show the girl behind the counter you’re serious about getting to know her. But she’s on-the-job, and you don’t want to make her feel harassed. Something small and friendly, like a gift card to a place she’s mentioned, with your phone number and an invitation to something casual, is the best way to go. That way, you put all the power in her hands (as it should be, since she’s trapped behind the counter!) and don’t force her to answer on the spot. Be prepared to give her a little space to answer, or not answer—but whatever the outcome, pat yourself on the back for handling it considerately.
-Someone complicated. Do you have longstanding sexual tension with someone? Perhaps you can’t make sense of their mixed signals—are they really interested? Or are they just shy? Here’s your chance to go a little deeper or make a clarifying gesture. If you want to make an appropriately ambiguous move that suggests your intrigue without confessing anything, a book or movie you’d like to share is perfect. A classic movie, or an elegantly bound book from a charming used-only retailer, has an unforgettable allure. If you want to cut the stalemate (one way or the other), an explicitly romantic present, like a single rose with a handwritten note, will do the trick.
-A rocky relationship. If quarrels have dominated your relationship recently, a present can be a soothing balm. For a partner who claims to feel unheard or unappreciated, try a truly thoughtful gift: a favorite book they’ve lost, two tickets for a concert they’ve been hankering to see, or a beloved but hard-to-find snack. For a partner who feels submerged in stress, a gift card for a spa (even men can use this!) is sure to be appreciated. And, for a romance that feels run down, investing in an experience, like wine tasting, kayaking, or a local class, can help rekindle old sparks.
-The girl who has everything. Your girlfriend has every kitchen gadget, computer gizmo, and iPhone accessory known to man. Her BlueRay collection rivals the NetFlix inventory, her wardrobe is immaculate. What could she possibly want? When you ask, she says, “Oh, I don’t need anything,” and you actually believe her. Instead of another dust-collecting knick knack for her windowsill, why not make a charitable donation in her name? Pick a philanthropic cause that she cares about, and tell her about your gift in a beautiful card. Who knows, this could become a tradition for you two!
-A hardcore hobbyist. Not every gift has to be classically romantic! For a computer geek, a new part with a witty note (“Thanks for the memory!”) shows your appreciation and support. Even if it’s not an obsession you share, your partner will feel more connected with you for showing an interest in their passion.
Whether you’re trying to fan the flames of a flirtation or renew your relationship for the long haul, your holiday gift is an opportunity to say what’s been on your mind without so many words. It’s not magic, but it sure can feel that way to a recipient unwrapping a thoughtful present! So before the shelves are picked dry, get out there and find (or make) something special for the object of your affection that they won’t soon forget.
This holiday, why not gift your beloved (or yourself!) a psychic reading? KEEN advisors from all walks of life offer spiritual guidance, wisdom, and romantic insight!