Posts Tagged 'holidays'

11 gifts you can give without spending time or a dime on Black Friday

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Black Friday as a concept is crazy to me. I don’t get it. Why do we put so much priority on giving material gifts as opposed to gifts that actually mean something. And the fact that Black Friday now starts on Thursday absolutely chaps my ass. I will not be participating in this atrocity and hope it goes away even faster than it came about.

Not being one to simply point out problems, I also have given some thought to potential solutions. Here is a list of “gifts” you can give that you can not purchase during a Black Friday Sale (even if you started camping out last week like some people have):

10. Form a Photo album- With the sheer amount of photos we have of each other on our phones, on Facebook and in old envelopes, this should be a no-brainer. Pick out some good ones and make a small book. Nothing brings smiles to people’s faces like photos of time gone past that was worth remembering.

9. Orchestrate a Mix tape- Yes, I’m that old that I still call them mix tapes. You can make a mix disk, or a playlist if you’re fancy. Whatever the case, take some of your favorite music, and even better, music that you both love and share it. Music is such a great way to bond and with this shared gift, you will be able to bond again and again.

8. Plant a tree- This is good for the environment and it’s great for creating memories. As an added bonus, it becomes the gift that keeps on giving as you nurture it and watch it grow.

7. Make a meal- It doesn’t have to be turkey with all the trimmings, it could be as simple as scrambled eggs with cheese (thanks to my lovely daughter for making that on my birthday last week). You will quickly notice a theme in the post, even the execution of these gifts is less important than the intent behind them.

6. Create a Collage- Take some of those pictures off of Facebook, or leaves from the yard, or other personal items that you have collected with your loved one(s) and arrange them on a large piece of construction paper. The story it tells doesn’t matter as long as it shares one about shared experiences.

5. Write or play a song- Don’t know how? Sweet, you’re like many other “Youtube sensations”. Just put together some words, make a nice melody and let it rip. Can’t play an instrument? No worries, sing it acapella. Sometimes, funny is good.

4. Give a Massage- Certainly not appropriate for everyone on your gift-giving list, but for those who are, few things say I care more than some quality touching. (note to self, not all massages with your spouse have to end in sex. They should, but they don’t have to)

3. Create Art- I can’t draw, sing, play an instrument, paint, make sculptures or pretty much anything else that seems artistic, but I can write some cheesy poetry. And you know what? That’s a form of art too. Whatever you’ve got, will be enough to brighten someone’s day.

2. Be of Service- Make a “date” to go do something nice for someone else. This could be a night at the soup kitchen or reading a story at the elderly care home or coaching a little league team. Whatever you do make sure it involves more than just you. Extra points if you can recruit some of your friends/family to serve with you.

1.5 Gift some Donations- What a wonderful way to leave a legacy…give to something bigger than you and the person you are giving to. You both win in this scenario.

1. Be generous with your Time- By far the most important one on the list. This is the only thing that you have to offer that is truly a finite resource. Give people the gift of you. Turn off your phone, computer or whatever else and actually BE with them.

What gifts will you be giving this year that can’t be bought and are uniquely you?

What gift would you hope to receive?

Wouldn’t it be nice to get back to love??

Enjoy your friends, family and other loved ones this holiday season. In related news, be nice to one another 😉

Networking Your Way Through The Holiday Season

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I have come up with a quick list of thoughts pertaining to networking and partying during the holiday season. Consider this a “do or do not” kind of list. Just always remember, “There is no Try” (Benji bet me a dollar I couldn’t get the word Yoda into a post).

So here’s the list:

10. Host your own network gathering- Bring your network to your office, house or favorite joint and introduce them to one another. It’s a great way to help many at once.

9. Learn other culture’s holiday greetings- I speak to a lot of people who miss saying “Merry Christmas”. So say it, but also be able to wish others a “festive holiday” of their choosing too.

8. Setup weekly 4 tops for lunch between now and holidays- This is a great way to bring your network closer together. Look for the synergies and let them happen at the table in front of you.

7. Instead of sending clients cards and gifts, send them referrals…now that’s the gift that keeps on giving.

6. Get the attendee list in advance- You will be able to make the most of your networking time by having this information. Hopefully that adds to your cheer.

5. Use your holiday networking time to help get a jump start on your new year- Start filling up your January calendar with the folks you are meeting now.

4. Don’t be that GUY* at the  party…you know the one who either is throwing their card in everyone’s face or falls down because they drank too much.

3. Know what your follow up plan looks like before needing it- If you know your target client and target business partners, you will know who the people you need to follow up with immediately.

2. Help others connect by introducing them to the people you know they need to meet- Listen. Understand how you can help and make the appropriate connections.  Both parties will appreciate it.

1.5 Ask the host “who are the three people here that I must meet”?- They know everyone so they are in the right space to play matchmaker.

And # 1 on the Networking Your Way Through The Silly Season

…Don’t Network in the Punchbowl!- It’s just bad form

*GUY is an acronym for Gender Undetermined Yet

Networking your way through the silly season- Top 10 List

I know it’s October and it seems way too early to be talking about holiday parties, but I suspect that within 2 days of reading this, you will see holiday decorations at your local stores. If retail can rush the Holiday season, then damn it, I can too!

To that end, I have come up with a quick list of thoughts pertaining to networking and partying during the holiday season. Consider this a “do or do not” kind of list. Just always remember, “There is no Try” (Adam bet me a dollar I couldn’t get the word Yoda into a post).

So here’s the list:

10. Host your own network gathering- Bring your network to your office, house or favorite joint and introduce them to one another. It’s a great way to help many at once.

9. Learn other culture’s holiday greetings- I speak to a lot of people who miss saying “Merry Christmas”. So say it, but also be able to wish others a festive holiday of their choosing too.

8. Setup weekly 4 tops for lunch between now and holidays- This is a great way to bring your network closer together. Look for the synergies and let them happen at the table in front of you.

7. Instead of sending clients cards and gifts, send them referrals- What can I add to this?

6. Get the attendee list in advance- You will be able to make the most of your networking time by having this information. Hopefully that adds to your cheer.

5. Use your holiday networking time to help get a jump start on your new year- Start filling up your January calendar with the folks you are meeting now.

4. Don’t be that GUY* at the party…you know the one who either is throwing their card in everyone’s face or falls down because they drank too much.

3. Know what your follow up plan looks like before needing it- If you know your target client and target business partners, you will know who the people you need to follow up with immediately.

2. Help others connect by introducing them to the people you know they need to meet. Ask questions. Listen. Understand how you can help and make the appropriate connections. Both parties will appreciate it.

1.5 Ask the host “who are the three people here that I must meet”?- They know everyone so they are in the right space to play matchmaker.

And the real # 1…Don’t Network in the Punchbowl!- It’s just bad form

*GUY is an acronym for Gender Undetermined Yet

This originally appeared in http://www.thenationalnetworker.com on Saturday, October 11 and is reprinted with their permission.