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It’s always a good time to start considering your Christmas wish list. In the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, we often forget to stop and ask ourselves, “what do I want for Christmas”?
We are usually too busy focusing on everyone else to ask that question, but we deserve to have a magical Christmas too! In light of that, here are some things to consider about ensuring that you have a wonderful holiday and get everything that you want for Christmas!
What Do I Want for Christmas?
When we focus on getting everyone else that perfect holiday gift, it can be hard to take a step back and figure out what we want for ourselves. If you’re struggling to come up with ideas for yourself, consider the five-gift rule.
What is the Five Gift Rule for Christmas?
The five-gift rule is a rule of thumb for buying Christmas presents, but it can work for making your own Christmas wish list as well. The rule is that you should get someone something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read.
These four things cover the basics, and I’ve seen a wide variety of ideas on what the fifth gift should be. Sometimes it’s something handmade, and other times it’s something to share. However, I think sharing gifts fall under their own category, and you could get a handmade gift that easily falls into wearable gifts or gifts that you want. In my opinion, the best option for the fifth gift is something to do.
The fun thing about the five-gift rule is that it narrows down the types of gifts and makes it easier for you to think about what you want for Christmas. It’s easier to think about something you want to read or something that you need than it is to think about all the possible gift ideas out there.
What Should I put on My Christmas Wish List?
You should consider the five-gift rule when deciding what to put on your Christmas Wish list. The answers are going to be different for everyone because everyone has different wants and needs. But here are some ideas to get you started!
Something I Want
What do you want? What have you been eyeing that you haven’t bought yourself? It could be a fragrance that you’ve been dying to try or a game that was just released for your favorite console. Maybe you just want a cozy blanket and a self-care basket.
Think about the things that you’ve wanted for the past few months, and be sure to put them at the top of your Wishlist.
Something I Need
There are a variety of things you may need. It might be that you need new accessories like purses, wallets, or shoes, but it might be that you need new houseware items like pots and pans or bathroom towels.
Be careful not to go overboard with needs. When I was little, my father would always get my mother a new vacuum for special occasions. My mom wasn’t obsessed with cleanliness. She didn’t love vacuuming. While it’s true that the family needed a vacuum, it probably wasn’t the best choice for a present. I always felt so bad for her when everyone else was getting cool toys and gadgets for the holiday, and she got something to make her do more work.
Make sure that the thing you need is something you will actually enjoy using. You don’t have to take one for the team and ask for something that will help you do chores for Christmas.
Something to Wear
Next, consider asking for something to wear. This can fulfill a specific desire, like that amazing leather jacket you’ve been eyeing, or it can be something general like socks or winter accessories.
When asking for something to wear, be sure that the gift giver knows your style and size. Be specific about what you want so that you get the right thing that actually fits you. Don’t ask for a new hat; you may end up with a baseball cap when you really wanted a knit winter hat. Ensure that you are specific enough that you will get the item you really want.
Something to Read
Books make amazing Christmas gifts. There are so many books out there on various subjects, and we can order them with the tip of our fingers! Use the holiday as an excuse to dive into a new series or grab a novel that you’ve been wanting to read.
Non-fiction is a winning choice as well. Think back to the subjects that interested you most when you were a child, and browse the books related to that subject. You may respark an interest that is long forgotten.
Books are also great gift ideas because they tend to be low-cost. Most can be found for under twenty bucks, making them a perfect thing to ask for in a Secret Santa or white elephant gift exchange.
Something to Do
I prefer activities and events over things. One of the best gifts someone can get me is a scavenger hunt or tickets to see my favorite band live. Even tickets to a museum or theme park would be an awesome gift!
The special thing about a “doing” gift is sharing the experience with the gift giver. It will help build bonds and make your relationship, whether that be parent-child, friendship, or a romantic relationship) much stronger than a material gift.
Other Fun Gift Ideas
There’s a reason why so many people have a different number five in their five things gift guides. There are so many different types of gifts! No wonder it’s so difficult to determine what we want. Here are two more great ideas for things to add to your Christmas wish list that didn’t make it to the big five that I mentioned.
I love sentimental gifts. There’s nothing better than getting a framed photograph of a favorite memory or a relationship scrapbook that shows you how important you are to the other person.
Sentimental gifts can also include things that have special meaning to you. Perhaps you are a super fan of a specific television show or sports team. Getting a gift that reminds you of the thing you love can also be an incredibly sentimental experience.
Something Hand Made
Hand-made gifts are in line with sentimental gifts. It feels amazing to know that someone cares so much about you that they would put time and energy into handcrafting something specifically for you.
My best friend’s mother crocheted me a hat and scarf set for Christmas last year, and it was one of the sweetest gifts I’ve ever received. Wearing this set gives me a warm feeling that store-bought items just can’t compete with.
If you have a friend with a special talent, see if they will be willing to make one for you for the holidays. Be sure that you aren’t asking too much, though – don’t ask a random acquaintance to make you ten scarves. This should be an intimate thing between close friends, and you should definitely return the favor in a way that is appropriate for you.
What Should I Ask for When I Don’t Know What I Want for Christmas?
Hopefully, the rule of five gift guide gave you some ideas of what you might want for Christmas. But if you already have everything you could want or still can’t come up with anything, you still have options.
You can ask for traditional gifts that make it easy for everyone, or you can ask for something that helps someone else.
You know these gifts. This is what we get the teachers, hairstylists, friend’s mom, and office acquaintances for Christmas. It’s the scented candle, the cute coffee mug, the random coaster pack. The little item that it never hurts to have more of.
These traditional gifts also include gift cards, candy boxes, and those fun gift sets that you find everywhere around Christmas time. These things are easy to find and usually low cost, so if your goal for your Christmas wish list is to make Christmas shopping easier for those around you, these are great options. You will probably get good use out of them too!
Something That Helps Someone Else
A more altruistic Christmas gift benefits someone else. Rather than asking for a gift for yourself, you can ask that the gift giver donate money to a charity in your name. This is a great option if you have everything you want, and it shows the giver that materialistic things aren’t always necessary.
Another way you can make your gift help others is by asking for something that the entire family can enjoy. This can be tickets to an event or something to eat like a nice cake. If the giver is planning on spending a lot of money on you, you can ask for something like a new television or computer that everyone can use.
A final thing you can ask for is help at a charity. If you want for nothing, ask folks to volunteer their time as a gift to you. You can bond with the people you care about while working for a worthy cause. Be sure to check with the charity and make sure they need help before arranging to go – sometimes occasional volunteers can disrupt the activity and make things harder for everyone.
If there isn’t a charity that needs help, you can organize your own food drive or collect box tops for the local schools. You can volunteer to pull weeds at a local park or community garden. You can even go and pick up litter at the local park. There are tons of things you can do to help make your community a better place.
Unique Gift Ideas
When deciding what you want for Christmas, a final thought is to consider unique gifts you can find online. Find something that inspires you on Etsy, look for unique shirts on T-Public, or learn something from offerings on Gum Road.
An advantage to asking for these types of things for Christmas is that all purchases support individual creators rather than large corporations. When you buy something on Etsy or Gumroad, you’re supporting a small creator, which adds a bonus to the gift-giving experience.
You can find anything from digital products to handmade jewelry to specially designed mugs and shirts on these platforms, and the creators will appreciate the purchases far more than the Walmart’s of the world will.
When thinking about the perfect Christmas gifts, don’t forget the stocking stuffers! Even if you are the stocking stuffer in your home, that doesn’t mean you should miss out. It just means that you can fill your own stocking with whatever you want!
Skincare products make wonderful stocking stuffers for yourself. Get yourself some luxurious lotions, bubble baths, and bath bombs that you can use for self-care. When getting it for yourself, you can pick the perfect combination of fragrances and indulge in the bath that is perfect for you.
Other great stocking stuffers include things like sunglasses (you wouldn’t think they’d be needed in the wintertime, but they are!), candies, small gadgets, batteries, and even little sentimental toys. A journal and a fancy pen set might fit into your stocking as well!
More Holiday Gift Guides
Although we focused on your personal Christmas wish list, we know that one of your main goals is to create wonderful Christmas memories for your loved ones and enjoy a festive holiday season. To that end, we’ve created a variety of gift-giving guides to help you find the perfect gift for everyone on your list. We have specific gift guides for gamers and artists and a general gift guide based on personality types. You are sure to find the perfect Christmas gift for everyone on your list in these guides!
Have a Merry Christmas!
Christmas is the season of giving. Have a wonderful holiday season, and embrace the spirit by giving gifts and making others happy. But don’t forget to ask yourself, “what do I want for Christmas” to make sure you get everything your heart desires as well. You deserve it.
Merry Christmas, everyone!
Melanie launched Partners in Fire in 2017 to document her quest for financial independence with a mix of finance, fun, and solving the world’s problems. She’s self educated in personal finance and passionate about fighting systematic problems that prevent others from achieving their own financial goals. She also loves travel, anthropology, gaming and her cats.