You may be the single best gift giver in the entire world. It’s entirely possible that you manage to pick out great gifts for every single person on your list no matter what the occasion. Unfortunately, no one will remember that great personality trait if you aren’t a gracious gift receiver. Need a few quick lessons? Before you can learn, there are two essential rules you must keep in mind as you open any gift.
1. Control Your Facial and Verbal Expressions
First, keep in mind that you cannot display either verbal or non-verbal disappointment. The individual giving you the gift has worked hard to offer you something that you’ll love. Frowning or making any facial gesture other than one of pleasure is absolutely the worst possible thing you can do, even if it's a shirt you already own or a cheap gift basket.
2. Don't Make Jokes
Second, make certain that you don’t joke about the gift. Don’t comment on the price or any other aspect of the gift that may seem amusing to you. The rule of thumb is that it’s the thought that counts, and making fun of any aspect of the gift is likely to make the gift giver feel bad about what they bought you, or worse yet, feel you are rude and unkind.
Have a Conversation With Yourself
If you truly want to be a good gift receiver, there are three considerations you should have at the forefront of your mind. First, remember a bit of humility. Set your own feelings of pride aside or any discomfort you feel about the gift. Be humble for just a moment. Focus on the feelings of the person who gave you the gift instead of your own feelings at receiving it.
Second, always keep gratitude in mind. Selfishness cannot play a role in getting a gift. No matter what you have received, you need to be grateful for it. Whether you actually wanted anything or not from that person, you need to be happy that they’ve bothered to get you anything at all.
Third, think about the value of the person’s relationship with you. Their gift of love or friendship probably has an immeasurable impact on your life, so no matter what you may have received, you need to consider that relationship carefully and show your gratefulness for the role they play in your life, not just the gift they’ve offered.
One of the biggest problems for many people is that they have unrealistic expectations when it comes to receiving gifts. Whether you’re talking about wedding gifts or those given at holidays, even birthday gifts, you have to think carefully of those giving you the gifts.
They may not be in a position to spend a lot of money. They may not have a clear sense of what you expect, either. Thinking carefully about the gift giver’s intentions and his or her own situation may give you a better outlook on the gifts you do end up getting.
The world isn’t always a pretty place. Carefully considering the feelings of others as you receive your gifts is essential to becoming a gracious gift receiver.