Inside: Here you’ll find five strategies to help you make holiday purchases with intention this year PLUS a list of gift ideas for minimalist adults. *For your convenience, this post contains affiliate links at no additional cost to you.
This year, it’s more important than ever we give with greater intention. I’ve created this list of minimalist gift ideas for adults not because these are the only gifts minimalists are to receive this year, but to spark a little creativity as you curate your own holiday gift list. With the level of stress we are all experiencing this year, we are more susceptible than ever before to use retail therapy and impulse shopping as a quick fix to numb out and distract ourselves.
Before we get into the gift ideas, here are five tips to help you make more intentional purchases this holiday season.
1. Pay Attention to Your Stress Level
Avoid holiday shopping when you’re feeling especially stressed out. Now, I say “especially” stressed out because this entire year has upped our stress levels. It’s important we pay attention to our feelings and resist the urge to try and fix the chaos by buying more this season.
Instead of using online shopping as a distraction, go for a walk, call a friend, bake your neighbor a loaf of bread or get lost in a book. Whatever you do, don’t online shop while extra stressed.
2. Get Creative
I always prefer giving experiences over things. This year, life looks a little bit different. Many experiences are unavailable to us. Giving experiences over stuff doesn’t have to mean a trip to Disney World instead of tons of toys. Consider ways you can gift stay-cation experiences as well. Perhaps it’s an Airbnb Experience, themed day, curated gift basket, local restaurant or Door Dash gift cards.
3. Make a List
Decide before shopping, exactly what you’re buying and who for. I use the notes app on my phone to keep a list of gift ideas starting around September. By the end of November I finalize what I’m getting for each person.
4. Be Intentional
The secret to gifting like a minimalist isn’t found in a gift guide, this one or any other. It’s not found in an Instagram ad or the holiday gift catalogue in your mailbox either. No, it’s found in knowing the people you’re giving to well. Taking the time to really think about the types of items they would love and setting aside your own needs when giving. Just because you’e got a thing for vintage coffee mugs, doesn’t mean your sister does too.
5. Buy Local
Small businesses are hurting right now. Whenever possible, buy from local businesses in your very own community. Give gift cards to local restaurants, and use drive-up services to buy items you need. Whenever possible, help your neighborhood business by buying from them first.
For a list of pandemic friendly clutter free gifts for kids read:
Clutter Free Gift Ideas for Kids in 2020.
Gift Ideas for Minimalist Adults in 2020
Air BNB Experiences
AirBNB experiences went virtual and now it’s full of at home adventures for the whole family. You can talk with a shark scientist, learn to bake french macaroons or even book a magician. There are group and private lesson options for just about every experience.
Learn to Make Homemade Limoncello with Rosa, a tour guide from the Amalfi Coast
Paul and I did this experience and loved meeting Rosa and learning how to make Limoncello from her family’s recipe. She also taught us about the region and what makes lemons from the Amalfi Coast so special. My limoncello is currently infusing on my counter. Can’t wait to taste it!
Digital Picture Frame
With this digital picture frame you can send pictures directly to a frame (connected to wifi) from your phone or computer. I love this gift, especially right now.
Blue Land Hand Soap
Spoiler alert: Everyone on my gift list this year is getting a Blue Land hand soap starter kit. We stopped buying disposable plastic soap dispensers and switched to Blue Land earlier this year. The eucalyptus lavender is my favorite scent. It’s a cost effective way to reduce waste and save space. Bonus: My kids love mixing up the new soap.
I love a good gift basket and it’s a great idea for all ages.
- Movie night
- Pizza night
- Game night
- Local restaurant & shops
- Wine and cheeses tasting
- Local beer
- Sweet tooth
- Books and coffee/tea
I’ve requested a bag of frozen rolled grape leaves from my mom and frozen clam chowder from my mother in law. I’d love to receive the gift of not having to cook dinner.
This simple, beautiful calendar was designed by my sweet friend Erica Layne of the Life on Purpose Movement. It includes 365 inspirational quotes to help you live each day with greater intention.
Wine or Fruit of the Month Club
Hello Fresh is a meal delivery service. You can select a plan that fits your life and family size, choosing from a variety of dietary options. Each week, or as often as you decide, all the ingredients you need to make your meals will arrive on your doorstep.
Ring Door Camera
SimpliSafe Security System
- Paddle board
- Fishing poles
- Hunting gear
- Hiking gear
Bike Hitch Rack
Indoor Plants and Planter
In my experience, snake grass is a great indoor plant option for those of us who can’t keep plants alive.
Here are my top five favorite reads this year:
- Just Mercy, by Bryan Stevenson
- The Road Back to You by Ian Morgan Cron and Suzanne Stabile
- We Were the Lucky Ones, by Georgia Hunter
- Where the Crawdads Sing, by Delia Owens
- Get Out of Your Head, by Jennie Allen
Kindle Gift Card
Ancestry or 23andMe
Tame the Toy Overwhelm Workshop with Denaye Barahona PH.D
Uncluttered Course (Opens for registration in January)
Make a Donation In Lieu of a Gifts
Compassion International Gift Catalog
Weekend Survival Kits
Needs List at my local Lansing City Rescue Mission (Amazon Wish List)
I’d love for you to share any other clutter-free gift ideas in the comments. Have a wonderful holiday season friend and be safe.
For More Holiday Gift Giving Inspiration Read:
100 Gifts Ideas For Minimalists of All Ages
Clutter-Free Gift Ideas for Kids in 2020
How to Help Family Stop Giving Too Many Christmas Presents
A Minimalist Christmas: Our Before and After Story
Need Some Serious Decluttering Motivation?
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