By: Cathy Logan, CHC, COT, CECP, CBCP

It’s that time of year again… when people run around making themselves crazy looking for the perfect gifts for everyone on their list.

I do it, too. It’s easy to get lost in the trappings versus the meaning of the season.

My kids always ask me what I want for Christmas. Some years ago, I was thinking about that and came to a few realizations.

First of all, gifts don’t need to cost a lot of money. Part of the stress of gift-giving is staying within budget; I’m not sure why we feel compelled to overspend. It’s needless, burdensome anguish.

Instead, I tell my kids to just put some thought into it. Thoughtfulness is number one in my book because, to me, it shows that you care. A beautiful photograph, something handmade, a CD with your favorite music… something they took the time to do or think about means the most.

As well, one of the most precious things you can give to anyone is the gift of your time. Sometimes all we really want is quality time with a loved one, having their undivided attention fills our souls.

In the hustle and bustle of everyday life those connections can fall by the wayside. When you give someone your time, you’re showing them that they matter to you and that you care.

Make the effort this holiday season to spend some quality time with at least one person you care about. Even just visiting someone for a few hours can make their holiday special.

My mother is 93 years old. She lives two hours away, but I make it a point to visit her for the weekend once a month. The minute I tell her I’m coming she is so happy! I know all she really wants for Christmas is for me to continue to visit regularly throughout the year.

If you do have the funds, another nice thing to do is to make a charitable donation in someone’s name. (This is especially true for the impossible-to-shop-for folks on your list.) There are so many wonderful charities to support. One year, a donation was made, in my name, to the Golden Retriever Rescue. Since I have two beloved Goldens, I thought this was a fabulous gift!

So, this holiday season think outside the gift-box. Yes, it’s easier to write a check or to order something online; but, the gifts that are long-lasting are the ones from the heart.

Wishing you all of the blessings of the holiday season, and good health and happiness in the New Year!

Cathy is a Certified Health Coach, a Certified ONDAMED® Technician, and a Certified Emotion Code® and Body Code® Practitioner. She is also trained in Ionic Foot Detox.