Mom Gift

With Mother’s Day fast approaching, I'm sharing some fantastic research into the effects of gift-giving and providing ideas on how to give your Mom a gift she will truly treasure.

Studies have found that if the gift is valued by the recipient, they feel valued by the giver and so thoughtfulness is key, not expense.  (Zhang, Chen, Xie & Zhao, 2017).

There are a host of ways to use research alongside some helpful tips and tricks to make sure your gift gives your mom an extra warm feeling this Mother’s Day.  

  • Flowers are seen as an easy option, but research has shown that they have both instant and long-lasting effects on both emotions, moods, and behaviors (Haviland-Jones, Rosario, Wilson & McGuire, 2005) and if you don’t know their favorite flower, consider flowers that have a connection to her or consider the colors of the flowers. 

    • You can opt for one of the colors you know your mom loves or that matches her home

    • Consider colors like blue and purple, as research shows these colored flowers actually improve mood and increase relaxation. (Elsadek, M., & Liu, B. 2021)

    • Add a note explaining why you chose the flowers you did, was it the color or perhaps they’re native to her birthplace or favourite island, perhaps the flower itself has a significant meaning.

  • Think about choosing an experience. Studies have shown that experiential purchases like a dinner out, vacations, a concert are more likely to bring more long lasting happiness than material gifts such as jewellery or clothing. This is due to what is called hedonic adaptation or the hedonic treadmill in psychology: that even after a positive event that may boost happiness, people always return to their baseline or default level of happiness. The treadmill comes in when we continually try things to boost our happiness up again, only to have it fall back to the default. (Gilovich & Kumar, 2015) Studies have suggested that materialistic gifts are more prone to hedonic adaptation than experiential ones. This is called the “experiential advantage.” (Chu, 2022)

    • For moms in particular, who usually are making sure everyone else is taken care of, giving your mom something uniquely for her can be really special:. 

      • A spa day - you can purchase gift vouchers from sites like Spa Finder 

      • A flower-arranging class

      • A Paint and Sip event

      • A night out with girlfriends without having to worry about finding a babysitter. 

  • There's almost nothing more that mom’s love than to see their kids shine in their most authentic way, if you have a talent you can share, your Mom will love to see it:

    • Draw a picture

    • Write poetry - ‘An Ode to Mom’

    • Play or write a song for her

  • If you don’t know what you mum treasures, ask your Mom questions and think about how you can gift around them, Some ideas include:

    • What is your favorite flower or candle?

    • What was the most memorable gift you have ever received?

    • What memories bring you joy? 

  • If you’re really stuck on what your Mom would like, another great way to gift is giving something that means something to you and inserting a gift card to tell your mom why. For example: “I found this tea towel and instantly thought of Sunday dinners in your kitchen when we were kids” 

    • Using inside jokes or monograms

    • sites like Not Another Bill are great to personalise gifts

    • Or consider Shore Bags for some beautiful personalized totes.

  • If you’re time poor, consider a gift card to her favorite shop or restaurant and consider booking a night for her so that she doesn’t forget to use it.

It’s not all about the actual gift either, it may seem basic but there are a few must do’s when gift giving:

  • Hand write the note and card, research has shown that had written notes are more likely to make the person reading them think highly of the writer and identifying them as ‘someone who makes me feel good’ 

  • Also fascinating info about the perceived feeling of gratitude from recipients from a handwritten postcard vs typed postcards with various different fonts. The handwritten cards were evaluated the highest because:

  • Make sure to take the price tag off. Nothing says that you put little thought and effort into a gift than not taking the time to make sure the tag is removed. It may help to give yourself a checklist to ensure that you don’t forget.

  • Wrap your Gift! A study found that a gift attractiveness can improve how the gift is received, so take the time to make it look attractive: wrap it, add a bow and a card.’ (Zhang, Chen, Xie & Zhao, 2017)

Finally, to help with gifts in the future use note taking app such as Notes, GoogleKeep or Microsoft One Note, you can even send emails to yourself and create a gift idea folder. You can also use a good old fashioned note book or file. Include images or links for future purchases. Pinterest boards are one example of an easy way to collect ideas and inspiration for gift-giving across the board