A new relationship makes almost everyone want to give gifts; after all, a thoughtful gift is a great way to show how much you value your new partner. Unfortunately, most people have trouble navigating the process of gift-giving with someone new.
It’s easy to wonder whether your gift will really be appreciated, whether you’ll make your special someone uncomfortable, or whether you’re spending the right amount.
The good news is that gift giving, dating and relationships don’t have to be stress-inducing. Here are some tips for finding the perfect present for that certain someone.
Don’t Overdo It
In the early stages of a relationship, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by your feelings and spend too much or purchase a gift that’s just too intimate. Take some time to think about how you’d feel if someone you met recently gave you a present of the same value or type.
Remember that gift appropriateness varies by the relationship; for some couples, there’s nothing weird about giving a lingerie set within the first few months of dating. For others, this might seem invasive. Whenever you’re in doubt, scale your efforts back a little. You and your partner will feel a lot more comfortable.
Avoid Generic Presents
Most of us are bombarded on a daily basis by messages about what love is and how it works. The majority of relationships don’t work the way a romantic movie does, however.
Don’t give jewelry, chocolates, roses, wine or other stereotypically romantic gifts unless you know your special someone loves those things. Your efforts will be received a lot more favorably if you take the time to think about the person and what he or she values.
Even if the gift costs less, the personal touch is usually worth a lot more.
Don’t Be Afraid to Be Practical
There’s an assumption that romantic gifts need to be lush and superfluous. For a lot of people, however, ornamental presents just take up space, food can ruin a diet, and clothes are fraught with emotional issues.
One good way to avoid these problems is by observing your special someone and thinking about what he or she needs. While it’s not a good idea to get your girlfriend a vacuum cleaner unless she’s been looking for one, practical gifts can be very well-received.
Consider specialty kitchen tools for an avid cook who wouldn’t ordinarily buy them. For a bookworm, think about picking up the newest novel from your beloved’s favorite author.
If your partner likes fixing or building things, consider a project kit or a specialized tool from a well-regarded brand. These gifts show that you’re interested in one another’s hobbies and are often better than impractical but conventionally romantic choices.
Keep Things Simple
Big gifts can cause a lot of problems, especially if you give them when there’s no major occasion. While you may feel like you’re just showing your love, you might make your partner feel obligated or uncomfortable.
As part of a new couple, it’s usually wise to keep things simple. Choose a smaller, less-expensive gift over a big or complicated one; a new bottle of a favorite cologne or tickets to a concert you know your partner wants to see are entirely appropriate.
Communication is King
Don’t be afraid to talk to your partner about gifts. It may seem awkward, but it’s actually easy; most people enjoy discussing the kinds of things they like to receive and the way they prefer to get them. If you’d like the present to be a surprise, keep the conversation hypothetical.
If you’re not as worried about the surprise element, don’t be afraid to ask outright about gift giving. You can even go to the mall or a specialty store as a couple. A shopping trip at your partner’s favorite boutique or hobby store could be an excellent gift in and of itself.
This principle holds true for other aspects of the relationship, as well; you’ll get plenty of relationship and dating advice, but you should always make sure to communicate clearly.
Even if your relationship is brand new, giving gifts doesn’t have to be frightening. Just take a little time to think about what the other person enjoys and put yourself in his or her shoes.
Make your gift individual and don’t be held back by how you think romantic presents are supposed to go. The result will be a genuine, individualized gift that your partner will appreciate, no matter how small or large it may be.