If you’re looking for thoughtful presents this holiday season that promotes mental health and wellness, then are 12 gift ideas for you to consider.
1. “Get Well Soon” Self-Care Package
If you frequent social media sites like Pinterest, then you’ve probably come across hundreds of ideas for making your own “Get Well Soon” self-care package.
“Creating a self-care kit can be useful for those struggling with mental health because it helps to reinforce the message that there are things they can do,” therapist Daniela Paolone, LMFT told The Mighty.
“When emotionally distressed, it can be hard to be able to think of coping skills and other support methods to use in those moments,” added Paolone. “This is why the mental health self-care kit is so helpful; because it is something tangible in the form of a list or handout that the person can refer to as needed.”
If you decide to create your own self-care package for a friend or family this holiday season, you might want to include items like:
A journal and pen
Teas like chamomile, lavender, or peppermint
Essential oils, such as lavender or orange
Photographs of happy moments
Handwritten notes with positive messages
A sweet treat
Body lotion and/or moisturizer
You can also purchase premade self-care boxes on sites like Etsy and 1-800-Baskets.
While you could also include a book in a self-care package, they’re also one of the best stand-alone gifts that you can give someone. The main reason is that books are one of the best ways to decompress. What’s more, reading challenges you to grow, gives you different perspectives, learn new information, and can improve your memory.
3. Mindfulness and Mood Cards
Items such as Mood Cards: Make Sense of Your Moods and Emotions for Clarity, Confidence, and Well-Being “offer a fun and accessible way to help you identify and explore your moods and emotions.”
4. A Weighted Blanket
According to Casper, a “weighted blanket is a heavy blanket used for therapeutic purposes. Usually, around 15 pounds, these blankets are filled with heavier material and can produce a calming effect when placed on the body.”
Benefits of weighted blankets include:
Creates a calming effect.
Reduces heart rate.
Helps manage OCD.
Improves your mood by increasing the production of the feel-good hormone oxytocin.
5. Virtual Subscriptions
If you know anyone who is having trouble sleeping and is under a lot of stress, you could gift them a subscription to mindfulness apps like Calm or Headspace. Do they want to improve their physical health? Gift them a subscription to Down Dog, Daily Burn, or P .volve.
6. Gardening Tools
Gardening is a natural way to relieve stress, help manage eco-anxiety, improve your mood, promote sleep, and fight against certain diseases strengthening your bones and your immune system. It’s also an effective tool if you’re recovering from addiction. And, you’ll also have a bounty of fresh fruits, vegetables, and herbs.
You can visit sites like Gardeners for gift ideas ranging from seeds to toolsets to planter boxes. If the weather is too cold, consider options like terrariums, aero gardens, or houseplants like succulents.
7. Toys and Games
Whether if it’s for your children, nieces, nephews, or to connect with your inner child, sports equipment, puzzles, board games, coloring books, crafts, and even video games are healthy distractions that can help reduce stress and anxiety. Most of these also encourage physical activity.
8. A Pet
"When people think about pets as gifts, they’re thinking about the worst case scenario — that [the recipients] have no interest in getting a pet," says Christa Chadwick, CAWA Vice President of Shelter Services for the ASPCA. "We think it’s perfectly cool and okay to give pets as gifts as long as you have an understanding that the person you’re giving the pet to has an interest in owning one."
Additionally, the ASPCA recommends "giving of pets as gifts only to people who have expressed a sustained interest in owning one, and the ability to care for it responsibly.” Preferably, they should come from responsible animal shelters, rescue organizations, or other trusted sources.
The recipient should also have the time, space, money, and health to care for their new family member. You should also consider compatibility depending on their lifestyle. If they are a good match, gifting them a pet can help improve both their mental and physical health.
9. Motivational Water Bottle
Staying hydrated is essential for your health and wellbeing. Yet, so many of us fail to drink enough water each day. Thankfully, there are motivational water bottles, such as the appropriately named Motivational Bottle, that will remind and inspire you to stay on track.
10. Finger Labyrinth
Just like a full-sized labyrinth, a finger labyrinth is a much smaller version where you trace the path to the center using your finger. There are various types of finger labyrinths differing in size and complexity, including some so small they fit on a coffee mug!. These can be used for relaxation, concentration, and meditation.
11. Bluetooth Shower Speaker
This type of speaker can be used to sit back and relax to calming signs or a podcast while in the tub. Or, you can burn off some steam by singing along to your favorite songs while getting ready in the morning.
12. Gifts That Give Back
Giving back to the community not only makes the world a slightly better place, but it also lifts your spirits. If there is a cause or organization that a family member or friend is passionate about, wither make a donation in their name or shop their store so that they can show their support through a t-shirt, coffee mug, sticker, or whatever product they would enjoy.