What is your Gift Personality?

2 Comments November 23, 2012 in Christian Life, Marriage, Parenting and Teen Girls

Christmas and birthday gifts can be a point of tension in marriages and families, and among friends.

But sometimes, particularly in a marriage, gifts given can actually feel like weapons wielded instead of love extended. Why is that?

Gift Personalities

We’re all wired in different ways.

You’ve probably heard there are different personality types. Maybe you’re familiar with different love languages and different languages of apology.

Well, we also have Gift Personalities.

What is your Gift Personality - Carla Anne Coroy - Gift Personalities

You’ve probably received a gift, I’m sure, that was a lovely gift… But you didn’t appreciated it nearly as much as the giver would have expected.

Or perhaps you got a gift, opened it and thought, “Seriously? You got me this and you have been married to me HOW LONG??”

Gift Personality Differences are Huge!

Your Gift Personality is a combination of your personality type, your love languages, your stage of life, and your experience.

And it’s not unusual to have a Gift Personality that’s VERY different from that of your spouse.

I recently read a story of a woman who was given sparkling, genuine diamond earrings by her fiancé. But as he gave them to her he told her she was welcome to exchange them for art supplies. She felt loved and cherished, not because of the diamond earrings, but because her man loved her enough and knew her so well that he had given her the option of purchasing what she loved the most.

She never wore the jewelry – she spent the money on art supplies!

When I read that I felt like shouting at the Focus on the Family magazine I was reading!! “What?!? Do you know how much that costs? Do you have any idea what it means to have diamond earrings? Everyone will know you are your husband’s queen if you are wearing diamonds!”

Quickly though I remembered another friend who once told me she wished her husband would stop buying her diamonds and spend time with her instead. For her the diamonds didn’t communicate that she was his queen. Rather they were a sad replacement for the relationship she longed for.

My List of Gift Personalities

Here are the different kinds of Gift Personalities as I see it:

The Value and Quality Queen

If this is you, you are usually pretty satisfied with sturdy everyday, frugal purchases. But when someone buys you something of high quality instead of a knock-off brand, or a less-expensive brand, you feel like the gift tells you they think you are worth every penny.

What is your Gift Personality - Carla Anne Coroy - Quality Queen

You like gifts, but you’d rather get one high quality expensive gift than a dozen little gifts of lesser quality.

It actually does matter to you how much the gift cost, though you might never ask because you’d feel guilty about that.

You may prefer to wear expensive clothing because the quality is important to you.

You like to give high quality, expensive gifts because that is how you let people know they are important to you. You don’t like the idea of buying something for someone else that wouldn’t be good enough for you.

The Time and Attention Personality

You know this is you when you get a gift and you immediately start thinking through how long it took the giver to shop for or make the gift. Or how long it will last. Or how much attention they must have paid to your likes and dislikes to get you exactly what you wanted.

What is your Gift Personality - Carla Anne Coroy - Time and Attention

You also love gift certificates that allow you to cash in on time with the giver – perhaps for a coffee date, a snuggle on the couch, or an extra long long-distance phone call with them.

You like gifts that last, but pack a punch… such as getting tickets to go with the giver to your favorite concert or symphony, because you get the ticket but you can dwell on the wonder of it for maybe six months – and then have a whole evening of their attention and time during the event.

When someone gives you a handmade gift you value it because you know how much time they spent working on that for you. Wow!

When you give gifts you like to put a lot of time into each gift, and especially into the wrapping. You may prefer making gifts because you believe they mean more.

The Prove-That-You-Know-Me Personality

You are quite satisfied with little, inexpensive gifts as long as the gift shows that the giver knows you. If you love stationary aisles or stores like Staples, someone who knows you will know that a great gift for you is a pack of cute post-it notes or colored pens.

What is your Gift Personality - Carla Anne Coroy - Prove You Know Me

You would rather hear your loved one tell you all the things he knew you would love but couldn’t find or afford to get you than to receive one gift that proves he has no clue.

You tend to drop hints that sound a lot like, ‘I don’t want much, just get me…’ because you want to know that they were listening and cared about you as a person.

You probably prefer gift cards to places you absolutely love and that are unique to you rather than some craft that adds clutter to your house.

When you give gifts you tend to give very personal gifts, and you may like to include notes to the receiver about what you specifically appreciate about them. You would rather buy the exact type of coffee someone likes to prove you know them well, than to buy a gift card so they can go buy the kind they like themselves.

The Big is Better, Much is Merrier Personality

You love pizzazz and parties! You want someone to make a really big deal out of your event. You don’t really care how much people spend, or even how much time went into the whole thing. What you do care about is that you are the center of attention and that you get showered on!

What is your Gift Personality - Carla Anne Coroy - Bigger is Better

If someone gives you a puzzle for a gift you’d prefer they wrap each piece of the puzzle separately to make it more fun! You want the wrapping to be just as spectacular as the gift. The only reason you can see for the existence of gift-bags is that you can package more beautifully wrapped gifts in them!

You feel like the party is over too fast if you just got one gift. You like lots. Maybe you feel guilty about that because you should have grown up by now, right? But no matter how much you try to talk yourself out of this, you tend to be disappointed if there isn’t a pile of presents for you.

When you give gifts you like to give many, and each is individually wrapped. Maybe you add sparkle to each gift with bows and ribbon, whistles and bells. When you send a note you might even include sprinkles in the card to make opening the card an event in itself!

The Sensible and Practical Personality

There’s nothing you hate more than when someone buys you a gift that you know they can’t afford. You can’t even enjoy the gift.

What is your Gift Personality - Carla Anne Coroy - Sensible and Practical

You love it when the gifts you get are practical and can be put to immediate use. Before the gift is hardly unwrapped, the trash is already put away and you’ve calculated a place for that gift to live and be used regularly. If it replaces something you already had, chances are before thirty minutes is up that item is in your garage sale pile or in the trunk of your car ready for the Thrift Shop.

If you really don’t need anything you really don’t want to get anything.

You don’t enjoy gift exchanges because you know you won’t get something practical, or something you need.

You would rather have someone spend a half-hour having coffee with you, or send you a nice email expressing their best wishes, than spend money they don’t have on a gift you don’t need to clutter up space you don’t want filled.

When you give gifts you tend to ask, “What do you need?” or “What do you need most?” You love to be the rescuer with your gifts by meeting a deeply felt need.

If someone you know “has everything” you don’t feel at all compelled to buy them “junk that will just clutter the place up”.

You like to give gifts that can always be used, like gas cards, and grocery cards, and MasterCard gift cards. You can hardly, if ever bring yourself to spend money on superfluous things like ornaments, jewelry or games unless they serve a specific purpose.

Gift Personalities can Change over Time

So… do one or more of those descriptions sound familiar?

Sometimes our circumstances will alter our gift personalities. For example, if you are in a financial crunch and your first Gift personality is The Value and Quality Personality, you may find yourself in a season becoming The Sensible and Practical Personality. Or if you are normally the Big is Better, Much is Merrier Personality, a financial crunch may push you into the Prove-You-Know-Me Personality.

While there might be aspects of each Gift Personality that resonate with you, it’s most likely you will have one or two predominant Gift Personalities.

Share with us!

  • Which Gift Personality do you have?
  • Which does your spouse have?
  • Which do your kids have?
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