What would you say to me if I told you that I disliked receiving gifts? I’m not talking about all gifts. I’m talking about the ones I consider to be a waste of money because they render as useless.
I think we’ve all had gifts we received for Christmas and birthdays and seen them as a waste of money. But before you start thinking how ungrateful I sound, hear me out, because I’ve had an idea which I hope many of you will join in with me.
Nobody likes wasting money, do they?
No! Especially when they’re on a tight budget.
What saddens me most is witnessing people spending money on unwanted gifts because they feel they have to buy you something. With so many people less fortunate in the world, wouldn’t that money be better spent helping those most in need?
For years, I’ve donated some of the unwanted gifts I’ve received to charity shops. Unfortunately, because of lockdown, some charity shops are no longer able to take donations because they’ve nowhere to store new stock.
So, how do you ask people politely to stop wasting their money on Christmas and birthday gifts you didn’t request?
Have you encountered this situation?
A few months, weeks, days, hours, minutes before your birthday or Christmas, you hear the words ‘What would you like for Christmas/ your birthday?‘ Because I loath replying or hearing the phrase ‘I don’t know,’ I alway have a list ready. However, I still don’t always get the items on my list and sometimes end up with something I’ll never use or which has me scratching my head as to why it was purchased.
I’m lucky. But you may not be as fortunate as me.
I’ve always been one of those people that if they like something, buys it. It hasn’t always been like that. Like many, I’d have to save up to buy some of those items. And as somebody who dislikes being fussed over, buying what I want when I need it works perfectly for me.
However, as I’ve grown older, I find it problematic telling people what I want for Christmas or my birthday.
Allow me, therefore, to reveal the idea at the beginning of this post, which solves my dilemma and will change your next birthday (if you join me in this challenge).
Get writing or asking.
I wrote an email to my family members asking them not to buy me birthday presents. Instead, I asked them to choose a charity and donate the money to them.
Some family members didn’t like this idea, saying I had to have something, while some said they’d instead give me money to donate to a charity of my choice.
But that wasn’t what I was asking them to do!
I kindly asked them to donate the money that they would spend on me to a charity of their choice. That way, I’d feel great about money going to be spent on me, instead going to charity. I hoped it would make them feel great for donating to a charity of their choice. After all, we all feel good when donating to charity, don’t we? I saw it as a win-win situation.
Don’t allow people to knock your idea back.
Although my idea didn’t seem to go down well initially, I did get my way.
My family got together and money earmarked for my birthday presents has been donated to the Llanhilleth Miners’ Institute Covid Response Food Pantry. Here are the details.
So not only will the donations help in setting this new charity up, it will also help with some of the costs to run the programme. That makes me feel so good.
I realise that not everyone will want the money spent on their birthday presents donated. So even if it’s just the money for one present, think of all the good it will do if some of you ask for birthday money to be donated to a charity.
When your next birthday comes around, think about asking at least one person to donate the money they would have spent on you, to a charity of their choice. Just think of all the good you’ll both be doing in helping those less fortunate than you. Not only that, but I guarantee it will make you both feel great too.
How to completely change your birthday.
If you want to completely change your birthday (or Christmas 2021), ask everyone who buys you a birthday and/or Christmas present to donate the money they’d spend on your gifts to a charity of their choice. That’s what I’ll be doing in December 2021.
Will you take up my Birthday challenge? How would you feel if somebody asked you to donate the money you would have spent on a birthday or Christmas gift to a charity? Let me know by leaving me a comment and join the discussion.
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The power of the blogging and writing communities is something I’ve never underestimated.
Ask for some support or help, and it’s guaranteed that the blogging and writing communities will gather together and help.
Needless to say, I’ve never been let down when I have asked for help or support on a writing or blogging matter. I’ve often been overwhelmed by the amount of help and support offered to me.
On December 9th, 2019, I launched my fifth annual Christmas charity appeal to the blogging and writing communities. I asked bloggers, authors and writers to leave me links to their blogs, blog posts, author pages and books. For every link left, I would donate £1 to Battersea Dogs and Cats Home.
I’m delighted to announce that bloggers, authors and writers helped me raise over £250.
During the last five years, bloggers, authors and writers have helped me raise over £1,250 for charity.
On behalf of Toby, Austin and myself, thank you very much for helping us raise money for charity over the last five years.
Do you have any examples of the power of the blogging and writing communities? Share them with us in the comments section.