The holiday season could be stressful for some men for various reasons. There is a lot of pressure on men during this time of the year that is supposed to be festive and joyful.
Firstly, there is financial pressure. Buying gifts, food, drinks, a tree, decorations, etc., all add up.
Secondly, there is the case of annoying in-laws on the radar. Whether at your home or theirs, most men have to grin and grind their teeth while pretending to enjoy the time with their inl-aws.
Thirdly, research by Ipsos MORI for the Evening Standard showed that over 40% of men are stressed out by Christmas preparations. Apart from worrying about getting the right gifts, there is also the additional pressure of helping with decorations, supporting the partner, and keeping everybody happy.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to everybody out there. We can’t help you with your financial burden or stop you from pulling out your hair when dining with the inlaws. Still, we will try our best to alleviate the pressure of getting gifts this year.
Follow our gift guide, and you might just survive this holiday season.
For your friends
Let’s start off with the easier task on the list. Hitting the bullseye should be much easier as with the wife and kids, but mess it up, and your safe haven is compromised.
Your friends are your fortress where you can escape from the pressures of family and work life. You better keep this fortress clean if you want to make it through the following year. Here are some dos and don’ts regarding buying gifts for your friends.
Suggest a budget limit on gifts this year. This is somewhat tricky because you don’t want to be known as the stingy one. The upside is that this will minimize your options, and deciding what to get, would become much more manageable.
You would also be eliminating jealousy and resentment. Buying one friend a more expensive gift than the other could stir up negative emotions. Also, receiving a more expensive gift from a friend than what you gave could stir the pot.
Don’t buy a gift for your friend that is more expensive than the gift you got for your partner. This is very self-explanatory, but for those that didn’t understand this suggestion, just trust me. You don’t want to be gambling with this idea.
Don’t regift a gift from the group. Maybe Sam gave you a bottle of whiskey for your birthday, and then you wrap it up and give it to John. The odds are that they will talk and put one and one together. Not only will you wear the stingy crown, but you’ll be carrying the scepter of ungratefulness too!
For your partner
Your friends and children might forgive you for messing up their gifts, but your partner will become an archeologist with it. Long after you have forgotten about your trespassing, your partner will dig it up like some kind of Nobel-winning paleontologist and use it against you.
Get a thoughtful gift. From as early as September, carry a notebook around or make notes on your phone. Your partner might mention something in passing that they want and then seize that moment.
Write it down along with the date. When it gets closer to the holiday season, you’ll have a list of things to choose from. Even if you didn’t get the exact thing they were expecting, you would still be forgiven when you confidently state the day and time that your partner mentioned the gift to you. Your attentiveness and care will get you out of trouble, guaranteed.
Don’t regift. Whatever you do, don’t give your partner a gift that was given to you before. Your partner will find out about this, and then it is game over.
Don’t get your partner something related to household chores. A new broom, vacuum cleaner, or pan set will send you to a very dark place where there is no escape. If you do that, it might have been the very last holiday season you saw.
Don’t ask your partner at the last minute what they want. This shows a don’t-care attitude and might start a fight. Even worse, what your partner wants at that time, could already be sold out. Your situation would also get exponentially worse if they know that you already bought gifts for your friends before buying a gift for your partner.
For the kids
Kids could drive you crazy with their demands, and they could also be indecisive and change their minds last minute. When they are still young, and they believe in Santa, you have less stress. You can just tell them that it’s Santa’s fault they didn’t get what they wanted for Christmas. Just kidding, don’t do that!
The three-gift rule refers to the gifts that Jesus received from the three wise men. Many parents use this tactic to minimize the options children have at their disposal. Not only do the parents preserve their sanity, but the children also learn a valuable lesson.
Children learn to appreciate what they get because they are getting fewer gifts than before. Also, it helps develop problem-solving skills as they need to think hard and go through a vigorous process of elimination.
The four-gift rule is the modern version of the three-gift rule. Here, children get only four gifts: Something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read.
Another good idea to keep the suspense and excitement going is by letting them create a list with eight items from which the parents will choose only four.
Don’t surprise your children with the 3-gift rule or 4-gift rule when handing out the presents. Discuss it long before the time and let them be part of the process.
Don’t be unfair. Of course, you have a favorite child, but don’t reveal that through gifts. Try your best to keep the total value of all the gifts per child close to equal. This will eliminate any form of jealousy, squabbling, and stabbing.
Don’t outshine your partner. If you decide to buy separate gifts, don’t try to outdo your partner. Discuss it carefully beforehand and settle on what you will get. Don’t show up on Christmas morning with an additional surprise gift for the kids. The kids will love you for it, but you feel a sudden cold chill in the air and a dead stare in your partner’s eyes. This is only the beginning of your misery.
We would like to remind you that Sikkina has a buy two get one free policy. Choose three knives from our premium collection of American handforged knives, and you’ll only pay for two. That means that you could make three friends equally happy and become their hero.Alternatively, keep one for yourself. Why not? It’s been a long and arduous year, and you deserve to treat yourself.