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Are you intimidated by getting someone a gift? Exchanging gifts can be daunting especially if you’re trying to impress them *choughINLAWScough*. Now gift ideas differ from one person to the other due to their personality type and demographic. While you’re caught up thinking what they might like or don’t, you’re forgetting the core fundamentals of gift giving. When buying a gift there are three factors that you must adhere too;

1. Functionality
2. Quality 
3. The element of surprise

Other factors such as age, gender, occupation and personality are simply guidelines to personalise your gift ideas.

Take for example when you’re planning a gift for dad. He is a middle aged man working as a lecturer in business. You think instantly “I should get him something related to being a man and being a teacher. He might like a necktie or a fountain pen“. While these make good gifts, they don’t make great gifts.

Always remember when you’re getting someone a gift, never get something they would expect to get for themselves. The surprise isn’t what’s in the box covered in wrapping paper but the gift ideas that you put into it.


1. Functionality
Let’s use the same example of your father. Your first goal is to get him something that’s functional to him. There are a lot of items that could serve as functional to him, but this is where his personality and traits come in. Clearly you don’t get him a makeup organizer because although it is practical, it’s not practical at all for him is it? Functionality covers both use and the ease of using it.


2. Quality
Your second target is to get him something of quality. Don’t mistake quality for price. While debatably with quality comes price, but it doesn’t always have to be the case. Malaysian shopping is always about sales. Christmas sale, Raya sale, Chinese New Year sale. All year round also got sale lah. So take advantage of your nation’s love for sales and get yourself a good bargain.

If you’re not sale savvy, you have to know your way in shopping. You need to know what brands gives the most value for price and what stores gives the best prices. Essentially while quality might seem like it’s the build and performance of the gift, its really the hard work you put into getting a great gift.

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3. Element of Surprise
The last factor that comes into play is the element of surprise. And no, getting him a tie hiding in the dark and yelling “SURPRISE!” doesn’t count. When you’re thinking of surprising gift ideas, it’s always gifts that they never knew existed or things they want but are reluctant to treat themselves with. I’m pretty sure there are things you want and can buy, but because you can’t justify the reason to buy it you just don’t’ buy it at all. Well, everyone else has been there too.

Now putting all three into an example, I will share with you my personal experience in getting my boyfriend an amazing anniversary gift.

Image source http://mdc.mo.gov

The gift was an Introduction to Glock Shooting for two. Now you may ask how this is functional. The functionality of this gift was from me to him. I bought the gift, I arranged the whole event and brought him there. All he had to do was simply attend and enjoy the experience together with me. With all that said I met the requirement of “use” and “ease” of functionality.

The quality of the gift was the event itself. The content of the event . The package includes safety briefing and a professional trainer that teaches you the right way to hold a gun and pull the trigger.

The surprise factor is pretty easy to spot. It’s very unexpected and rare that someone brings you to an event to “play” with guns. Also based on the fact that he loves shooting games and outdoor activity, I knew this would be a great gift.

Now you know the secret to buying someone an amazing gift and you will never run out of gift ideas. If you have friends out there that gives you horrible gifts, share this with them and hopefully they get better at gift giving too.