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Positive Impact Gifts

Positive Impact Gifts 

By Jasmine Gold 

During the holy ads telling me about the latest gadgets and toys that I should buy. Even if the ones I bought in the past might be working fine, I am supposed to get caught up in the holiday shopping frenzy and replace them with something new.

This is just one view of the holiday season. Since I own a unique local gift store and a healing center, I get exposed to many different angles.There are all kinds of people who shop at my store. Some of the customers say they finish their holiday shopping by October, but most of them shop in December, and especially in the last week. Often they are buying gifts because they are supposed to buy a gift for someone.They may not know the person very well or know what the person likes. These kinds of gifts are “have to” or “expected” gifts.

Gift Bags for the HomelessDo you hang on to very many of these types of gifts? How well do you remember the ones you gave or were given? Which ones do youremember and why? The gifts I tend to remember are the “positive impact” gifts. For instance, I remember achildhood gift from a boy who replaced a mirror that he had accidently broken when we were playing. It remains in my memory because I appreciated that he had replaced it.  

The other day I saw a story on Facebook about a four year old girl who met an old man at the grocery store on her birthday and wanted her picture taken with him. The man said it was the best day of his life in a long time. After the mom posted the picture on Facebook, she found out that his wife had died six months ago. The person telling her said he looked happier than he had ever been since that date. The mom called him up and he became a family friend. This kind of story epitomizes the impact a gift can give.

Now that we have the internet, it is much easier to find the positive stories like this, instead of the negative stories that the mainstream media tends to focus on. Sometimes one little planned or unplanned positive impact gift can create a big ripple Sometimes you might know about the effect and sometimes not. With a positive impact gift, it doesn’t matter. You do it because you want to, not because you feel you have to.

A positive impact gift doesn’t have tobe big. It can be as simple as paying for a stranger’s restaurant bill or bridge toll. You can help cook a meal for a homeless person or buy a holiday gift for a family in need.You can give your services to someone wh ocan’t afford to pay for them. You can shop local and support the local economy. You can smile at every person that you meet,whether or not you know them.

You can probably come up with many ideas of your own. Take a few minutes to brainstorm your skills and strengths – these are your positive impact gifts tothe world. Consider giving some of these gifts and seeing what ripples you can create.

Jasmine Gold is a Toltec Mentor trained by don Miguel Ruiz, author of the FourAgreements. She is the director of Songbird Community Healing Center and the ownerof Stones Throw Gifts in Cotati. These sister businesses provide intangible and tangiblegifts that inspire growth and wellbeing in body, mind, and spirit.