When it comes to giving gifts, so often our first port of call is simply to go out to the shop and buy something for our loved ones. These can range from toys for our children, the latest gadget for our husband, or some jewelry for our wife. Often it doesn’t occur to most of us that our gifts can extend far beyond the physical and tangible items we default to.

However, it is worth noting that some of the most valuable and highly appreciated gifts we can give actually cost us no money at all. While they are not free, they cost us in a currency that we all have in abundance… What are we talking about? Well, try give the gift of listening to someone important to you and see the joy it will bring them. Instead of engaging in conversation to get your point across try having a conversation with the main purpose of allowing the other person to feel heard. In this fast paced instant society we live in it can be a rare treat for someone to feel heard.

Maybe next time you find yourself getting a bit short tempered with someone who can’t seem to see things for what they are, try giving them the gift of empathy. Instead if reacting to their understanding being different to yours, allow them the grace of putting the effort in to see things from their point of view.

Friendship! That’s one of the greatest gifts because not only does it cost you nothing but you actually benefit from it too! Have you ever thought about gift giving in this context? You can give someone a gift that will make them happy, build them up and bring extra confidence into their lives while at the same time bring you extra comfort and make you a better person.

The opportunity of gift giving extends far beyond simply buying things, so we challenge you to try find new and exciting ways to give gifts to those around you. Ways that don’t cost you money and that grow the people around you. You’ll help make the lives of your loved ones better while at the same time growing yourself into a better, stronger, more rounded individual. So next time it’s someone’s birthday, or you feel like expressing love, consider these gifting options before you go out and buy something.