Researchers Cindy Chan and Cassie Mogilner offer simple guidance in their presentation. “Gifts don’t have to be huge monetary things to make everyone feel good.”. The psychology of gift-giving and receiving. When individuals are given a gift card instead of cash, they feel a justification to buy something that's out-of-the-ordinary. “If it is a romantic relationship, people will try to go for sentiment as well. Better to give than to receive, gift-giving is also an act of altruism — unselfish concern for the well-being of others. Researchers are exploring various aspects of gift-giving and receiving, such as how givers choose gifts, how gifts are used by recipients, and how gifts impact the relationship between givers and receivers. Whether it’s through television commercials and shopping websites filled with holiday music and graphics or store displays offering festive cheer, consumers can’t escape holiday advertising. Challenges of "picky" recipients. This mismatch arises because givers tend to focus on recipients' stable traits rather than recipients' multiple, varying wants and needs. Gift-givers tend to choose gifts that are personalized to the recipient, but are less versatile than what the recipient would like to receive, according to new research by Mary Steffel, Elanor Williams and Robyn LeBoeuf. Financial support for ScienceDaily comes from advertisements and referral programs, where indicated. Materials provided by Society for Personality and Social Psychology. Less picky people have a higher chance of receiving items they don't want, whereas picky recipients more often get what they want. Have any problems using the site? “People don’t always give just to get something back, but many times we think ‘if I do a good deed, something good will happen for me.’”. “Gift-giving feels good internally, and there are extrinsic benefits also.”. When we give without expecting anything in return, we are improving our psychological health. Some would say yes, without thinking twice. "The psychology of gift-giving and receiving." Are High-Protein Total Diet Replacements the Key to Maintaining Healthy Weight? A way to express feelings, giving reinforces appreciation and acknowledgement of each other. Activities such as gatherings or parties are also a good way to share the holiday spirit without exchanging gifts. "Givers tend to focus on what recipients are like rather than what they would like. ScienceDaily. Or perhaps the gift expresses more feelings than expected.”. Biofriendly Protocells Pump Up Blood Vessels, Researchers Identify Features That Could Make Someone a Virus Super-Spreader, New Effective and Safe Antifungal Isolated from Sea Squirt Microbiome, A Malformation Illustrates the Incredible Plasticity of the Brain, Water Fleas on 'Happy Pills' Have More Offspring, Key Advance for Printing Circuitry on Wearable Fabrics, Luminescent Wood Could Light Up Homes of the Future, Research Lays Groundwork for Ultra-Thin, Energy Efficient Photodetector on Glass. “In lifespan and developmental psychology, we teach about altruism and how it benefits individuals and society,” says Dr. Darlene Silvernail, owner of Silvernail Consultant Services and Psychology instructor at South University — West Palm Beach. There is an enormous sense of satisfaction when seeing the expression on the face of someone you’ve given a gift to. Shoppers are scurrying about looking for the right gift for the special people in their lives. When paying with a gift card, people forgo buying everyday items in favor of buying indulgent items.". Givers fail to anticipate this and favor specific over general gift cards," Steffel said.
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