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10 Gift Ideas That Will Make Someone Love You (Without Breaking the Bank)

10 Gift Ideas That Will Make Someone Love You (Without Breaking the Bank)

The holiday season is upon us. And we know what you must be thinking: “What am I going to get my friends and family this year?”

With work projects, going to the gym, cooking dinner, and planning for the holidays, it might be difficult to put in the time to research what gifts we should get for our loved ones. This is especially true in instances where there are several gifts we have to buy in advance!

Have no fear. In this post, we share unique experiences, useful time-saving tools, fun games, and more that serve as great gift ideas that will make your friends and family love you. Best of all, none of the gift ideas break the bank!

Read on for 10 unique gift ideas for the holidays that will make your loved ones feel loved and adored:

1. Trip to the Spa

What beats celebrating the end of the year than with a relaxing trip to the spa? Even though most of us could benefit from a day at the spa, we rarely seek it out actively. This is why a gift card or a spa package is a perfect gift for a loved one that could use a de-stressor in their lives.

Where to get it: Most spas in your local city will have a gift card package that you can purchase for the holidays. Or, you can also check out daily deal websites, like Groupon, where they always have these types of deals happening.

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    2. Cooking Classes

    Is one of your goals next year to eat in more? You can save money, learn the art of cooking, and invest the savings into other things more important to you. If you have a spouse, family member, or rooommate that shares your goals, you can offer them cooking classes to encourage them to cook at home more.

    Where to get it: There are many cooking classes on daily deal websites or you can check out websites like Course Horse, as well. Another viable option is to subscribe for weekly prepared ingredients sent to your door through services like Blue Apron.

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      From blueapron.com

      3. Private Language Lessons

      If you know someone who enjoys traveling to different locations or if you have plans to travel together with them, there’s no better way to prepare than learning the language of the country you’ll be visiting. Besides, what better way to show that you care about someone than helping them improve their education and knowledge?

      Where to get it: You can check out language learning websites like Rype, offering monthly subscriptions for 1-on-1 lessons online with handpicked professional teachers. Their Gift section allows you to send digital gifts instantly without breaking the bank.

      Rype
        From rypeapp.com

        4. Fun Card Games

        Not sure what to do with the family over the holidays? A safe bet is gathering around to play card games together. But not just any card games, we’re talking fun (and perhaps R-rated) games that will have you on the floor laughing.

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        Where to get it: The card game Exploding Kittens has been all the rage online and makes for an excellent game with friends and family. Cards Against Humanity is another classic choice that you can’t go wrong with. Keep in mind that both options have a PG version that you can play with younger people, if needed.

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          5. Home Automation Tools

          A new trend that has been on the rise is home automation tools. Google recently bought a company called Nest, which is the world’s first learning thermostat. Today, they have products for indoor and outdoor cameras and smoke detectors that you can install in your home. Another option is a smart assistant like Amazon Echo, which is an artificial intelligence system that you can ask any question to and it will answer.

          Where to get it: Nest or Amazon Echo

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            6. Smartpots (Indoors)

            Know someone that loves gardening but doesn’t have the time to deal with the headaches of gardening? Smartpots might be the perfect gift for them. In summary, smartpots is a fabric aeration container that allows you to grow anything with roots without the pain of digging up and planting a garden. Learn more here.

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            Where to get it: Smartpots

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              7. Fitness Memberships

              Getting back into shape is one of the most popular goals that people have in the New Year. Help make that happen for someone by giving them a membership or gift card to a gym.

              Where to get it: Classpass is a good place to start looking, as they already have locations all around North America. Their gift section allows you to digitally send gift cards to anyone online.

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                8. Take them to Broadway

                Know someone that’s passionate about the arts and performance? You can’t go wrong with taking them to a broadway show, or giving them two tickets to take someone else.

                Where to get it: Check out any ticket sellers like Stub Hub, Ticketmaster, or a broadway website, like Broadway.com, to find tickets and shows near your city.

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                  9. Book memberships

                  Have a bookworm in your family or friend group? Give them the gift of learning with a book membership. Similar to Netflix, there have been a rise of services that offer monthly access to books of your choosing.

                  Where to get it: Scribd or Audible (for audio books)

                  scribd_1
                    From scribd.com

                    10. Five-minute Journal

                    One way to increase your level of happiness is to actively practice listing what you’re grateful for. It’s even better if you can do it on a daily basis. That’s why there are journals like the Five-minute Journal. Every morning and every night (for a total of 5 minutes), you can list what you’re grateful for, how you could have made the day better, and what you’re excited about for the day ahead of you.

                    Where to get it: Five-minute Journal

                    img_does_work
                      From fiveminutejournal.com

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                      Sean Kim

                      Sean is the founder and CEO of Rype, a language learning app. He's an entrepreneur and blogger.

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                      Published on September 23, 2020

                      6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

                      6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

                      I don’t know about you, but many times when I hear the word negotiate I think of lawyers working out a business deal or having to do battle with a car salesman to try to get a lower price. Since I am in recruiting, the term “negotiation” comes up when someone is attempting to get a higher compensation package.

                      If we think about it, we tend to negotiate almost every day in a wide variety of things we do. Getting a handle on the important negotiation skills can be incredibly beneficial in many parts of our lives. Let’s take a look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

                      What is Negotiation?

                      First, let’s take a look at what negotiation is. Put simply, negotiation is a method by which people settle their differences. It is a process in which compromise or agreement can be reached without argument or dispute.

                      Anytime two people or sides disagree on something, they are almost always looking for the best possible outcome for their side. This could be from an individual’s perspective or someone representing an organization.

                      In reality, it’s rare that one side gets everything they want and the other side gets nothing that they are seeking. Seeking to reach a common ground of sorts where both sides feel like they are getting most of what they want is the key to being successful and maintaining the relationship.

                      Places We Negotiate

                      I’ve mentioned that we negotiate in just about all phases of our life. For those of you who are shaking your head no, I invite you to think about the following:

                      1. Work/Business

                      This one is the most obvious and it’s what naturally comes to mind when we think of the word “negotiate”.

                      When you first started at your current job, you might have asked for a higher salary. It could be that you delivered a huge new client to your company and used this as leverage in your most recent evaluation for more compensation. If you work with vendors (and just about every company does), maybe you worked them to a lower price or better contract terms.

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                      In recruiting, I negotiate with candidates and hiring managers all the time to land the best talent I can find. It’s very common to accept additional work with the (sometimes spoken, sometimes unspoken) agreement that it will benefit your career in the future.

                      Recently, I took over a project that was my boss was working on so that I would be able to attend a conference later in the year. And so it goes, we do this all day long at work.

                      2. Personal

                      I don’t know about you, but I negotiate with my spouse all the time. I’ll cook dinner with the understanding that she does the dishes. Who wants to mow the lawn and who wants to vacuum and dust the house?

                      I think we should save 10% for retirement, but she thinks 5% is plenty. Therefore, we save 8%. And don’t even get me started with my kids. My older daughter can borrow my car as soon as she finishes her chores. My younger daughter can go hang out with her friends when her homework is done.

                      Then, there are all those interactions in our personal lives outside our homes. The carpenter wants to charge me $12,000 to build a new deck. I think $10,000 is plenty so we agree on $11,000. I ask my neighbor if I can borrow his snowblower in the winter if I invite him over the next time I grill steak. And so on.

                      3. Ourselves

                      You didn’t expect this one, did you? We negotiate with ourselves all day long.

                      I’ll make sure I don’t skip my workout tomorrow since I’m going to have that extra piece of pizza. My spouse has been quiet the last few days, is it worth me asking her about, or should I leave it alone? I think the car place charged me for some repairs that weren’t needed, should I say something or just let it go? I know my friend has been having some personal challenges, should I check in with him? We’ve been friends for a long time, I’m sure he’d come to me if he needed help. I’ve got the #4 pick in this year’s Fantasy Football draft, should I choose a running back or a wide receiver?

                      Think about that non-stop voice inside your head. It always seems to be chattering away about something and many times, it’s us negotiating with ourselves. I’ll finish up that report that the boss needs before I turn on the football game.

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                      Why Negotiation Skills Are So Important

                      Put simply, negotiation skills are important because we all interact with other people, and not only other people but other organizations and groups of people as well.

                      We all rarely want the same thing or outcome. Most of the time a vendor is looking at getting you to pay a higher price for something than you want to spend. Therefore, it’s important to negotiate to some middle ground that works well for both sides.

                      My wife and I disagree on how much to save for retirement. If we weren’t married it wouldn’t be an issue. We’d each contribute how much we wanted to on our retirement funds. We choose to be married, so we have to come to some agreement that we both feel comfortable with. We have to compromise. Therefore, we have to negotiate.

                      If we each lived on a planet by ourselves, we would be free to do just about anything we wanted to. We wouldn’t have to compromise with anyone because we wouldn’t interact with anyone. We would make every choice unilaterally the way we wanted to.

                      As we all know, this isn’t how things are. We are constantly interacting with other people and organizations, each one with their own agenda’s, viewpoints, and opinions. Therefore, we have to be able to work together.

                      6 Negotiation Skills to Master

                      Having strong negotiation skills helps us create win-win situations with others, allowing us to get most of what we want in conjunction with others around us.

                      Now, let’s look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

                      1. Preparation

                      Preparation is a key place to start with when getting ready to negotiate. Being prepared means having a clear vision of what you want and how you’d go about achieving it. It means knowing what the end goal looks like and also what you are willing to give to get it.

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                      It also means knowing who you are negotiating with and what areas they might be willing to compromise on. You should also know what your “bottom line” is. By “bottom line” I mean what is the most you are willing to give up to get what you want.

                      For instance, several years ago, I decided it was time to get a newer car. I say newer because I wanted a “new to me” car, not a brand new car. I did my research and figured out what type of car I wanted. I decided on what must-have items on the car I wanted, the highest amount of miles that would already be on it, the colors I was willing to get it in, and the highest amount of money I was willing to pay.

                      After visiting numerous car dealerships I was able to negotiate buying a car. I knew what I was willing to give up (amount of money) and what I was willing to accept, things like the color, amount of miles, etc. I came prepared. This is critical.

                      2. Clear Communication

                      The next key skill you need to be an effective negotiator is clear communication. You have to be able to clearly articulate what you want to the other party. This means both clear verbal and written communication.

                      If you can’t clearly tell the other person what you want, how do you expect to get it? Have you ever worked through something with a vendor or someone else only to learn of a surprise right at the end that wasn’t talked about before? This is not what you would call clear communication. It’s essential to be able to share a coherent and logical vision with the person you are working with.

                      3. Active Listening

                      Let’s do a quick review of active listening. This is when you are completely focused on the speaker, understand their message, comprehend the information, and respond appropriately. This is a necessary ingredient to be able to negotiate successfully. You must be able to fully focus on the other person’s wants to completely understand them.

                      If you aren’t giving them your full attention, you may miss some major points or details. This leads to frustration down the road on both sides. Ensure you are employing your active listening skills when in arbitration mode.

                      4. Teamwork and Collaboration

                      To be able to get to a place of common ground and a win-win scenario, you have to have a sense of teamwork and collaboration.

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                      If you are only thinking about yourself and what you want without giving much care to what the other person is wanting, you are bound to wind up without a solution. The other person may get frustrated and give up if they see you are unwilling to meet them halfway or care little for what they want.

                      When you collaborate, you are working together to help each other get what is most important to you. The other upside to negotiating with a sense of teamwork and collaboration is that it helps create a sense of trust, which, in turn, helps provide positive energy for working to a successful conclusion.

                      5. Problem Solving

                      Problem-solving is another key negotiation skill. When you are working with the other person to get the deal done many times you’ll face new challenges along the way.

                      Maybe you want a new vendor to provide training on the software they are selling you but they say it’s going to cost an additional $20,000 to provide this service. If you don’t have the additional $20,000 in the budget to spend on the software but you feel the training is critical, how are you going to solve that problem?

                      From what I’ve seen, most vendors aren’t willing to provide additional services without getting paid for them. This is where problem-solving skills will help continue the discussions. You might suggest to the vendor that your company will also be looking to replace their financial software next year, and you’d be happy to ensure they get one of the first seats at the table when the time comes if they could perhaps lower the pricing on their training.

                      There’s a solution to most challenges, but it takes problem-solving skills to work through them effectively.

                      6. Decision-Making Ability

                      Finally, having strong decision-making ability will help you seal the deal when you get to a place where everyone feels like they are getting what works for them. Each step of the way you can cross off the list when you get what you are looking for and decide to move onto the next item. Then, once you have all of your must-have boxes checked and the other side feels good about things, it’s time to shake hands and sign on the dotted line. Powerful decision-making ability will help you get to the finish line together.

                      Conclusion

                      There you have it, 6 effective negotiation skills to master to lead a more fulfilling life. Once we realize that we negotiate in one form or another almost every day in every phase of our lives, we realize how critical a skill it is.

                      Possessing strong negotiation skills will help you in nearly every one of your relationships at both the workplace and in your personal life. If you feel your arbitration tools could use some sharpening, try some of the 6 effective negotiation skills to master that we’ve talked about.

                      More Tips to Improve Your Negotiation Skills

                      Featured photo credit: Windows via unsplash.com

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