A Holiday Handbook: 8 Ways To Make Getting Gifts Less Awkward

We all know what it’s like to unwrap a gift that has you assuming the giver must’ve accidentally thrown your actual gift away and replaced it with a piece of trash from the garbage. How do you respond?


Most of the time, even when I get a gift I like, I stutter and err through the thank you speech. Eventually, I revert to my ten-year-old self and, by my parents’ command, make my rounds in the living room, kissing everyone’s cheek like they’re my generous aunts or uncles.

Whatever I do, when I get a gift, I feel awkward. And if you can relate, we both deserve to freely accept the holiday blessings we will soon receive. So, here are 8 ways to make getting gifts less awkward:

1. Be a smug about it

Own it. You did it. You deserve this gift–this honor! Blow your grammy a kiss and let the applause of the family fade before making a speech.

2. Give a bow

Lock eyes with the person who gave you the gift and slowly lower yourself in a sprawling fashion. If you’d rather rock a curtsey, hike those jammies, and have a go.

3. Really cake it on

Tears are always a nice touch especially for the simple gifts like tightie-whities.

4. Use props

Everybody likes a show pony. Don’t limit yourself to simple ways of expressing gratitude. Consider buying a bunch of bananas for a start.

5. Get creepy with it

Another way of avoiding the potentially awkward interaction of receiving a gift is to ensure they’ll never, ever get you another one.

6. Spice things up with some good ol’ fashion sweetness

The haircut is key.

7. Use a puppet to make it less awkward

Plus you’ll have the whole family praying for your sanity throughout the year. Not a bad thing, right? I could use it.

8. Pretty much, just say thanks

No one needs a speech or some elaborate act. A gracious smile, some double eye contact, and a genuine “thank you” goes a long way.

In the end, don’t overthink it. Accept the gift as a gift, and don’t make it into a burden.

Photo by erin walker on Unsplash


4 thoughts on “A Holiday Handbook: 8 Ways To Make Getting Gifts Less Awkward

  1. Definitely going with the puppet. 🙂

    I really appreciated this, as I dislike accepting gifts, especially when the giver is present: Expressing the proper amount of delight and appreciation for what you neither need nor want feels like a command performance, stressful for its phoniness. (Once the pretense has passed, the next task is figuring out how to re-gift or taking it to the thrift store.) But if you’re honest and tell others you don’t want material gifts, you’re cast as a sourpuss and your wish is still often disregarded. Exhausting — and in an age when more material consumption is the last thing the planet needs.

    Liked by 1 person

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