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Everyday inspiration: Buy a gift for someone


Need a boost of happiness? It turns out giving someone a gift can lift your mood by delivering a “helper’s high.” We asked three women to buy a gift for someone and to report back on their experience.

Woman giving friend gift

Photo credit: Agnieszka Kirinicjanow/iStock/360/Getty Images

Challenge: buy a gift for someone

Why? Multiple research studies show gift giving is good for our happiness, health and social connection. Perhaps best of all, gift giving is contagious.

Dog daisy with lamb toy |

Jenny: One of the most important “people” in my life is my dog, Daisy. She is a cuddly nurturer who always makes me smile. In a spoiling type of mood, I bought her the most adorable stuffed lamb toy as a little token of my appreciation. She loves the lamb to death and it hasn’t left her side. While I’m a bit concerned that she thinks the lamb is her puppy, I love seeing her happy. It’s so important to let others know how much they mean to us, even if it’s with something as simple as a stuffed lamb.

Woman wearing watch |

Photo credit: Jupiterimages/Polka Dot/360/Getty Images
Roaen chose a timeless watch for her mom.

Roaen: Buying gifts for close friends and loved ones is sometimes difficult for me. One would think it’s easier because of the additional knowledge of that person. On the contrary, when I shop for someone close to me, it’s difficult because of all the different options, possibilities, etc. Should I get my mom a gadget? She’d love this app, but that’s not grand enough. Maybe some shoes? No, she’d want to try those on herself. The list goes on. In the end, I realized that like always, I was over-thinking the process. I decided to keep it simple and thoughtful. Lesson learned.

Zombie laser tag |

Erin: My friend Kristen and I have been friends since kindergarten, which is a fact I didn’t really appreciate until we got older. Today was her 29th birthday, and to celebrate, a bunch of us played zombie laser tag. We all paid for her admission as a birthday gift plus drinks, dinner, etc. Zombie laser tag is laser tag except with actors you’ve hired to act as zombies throughout the experience. It was exhilarating and terrifying.

Our Everyday Inspiration series wants to inspire you with small ways to improve your life. We’ve asked 20 women to take on a variety of small challenges and share their results. See all of our Everyday Inspiration challenges here, and meet the women here.

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