Today the subject of the holidays came up at work. Since my boss and I are both new to our building this year, we asked about the traditions in the office. We were told that the last day before Winter Break there was:
1) a breakfast in the media center, complete with decorations and candles,for all staff - put on by the prinicpal.
2) appetizer potluck in the conference room for non-licensed staff
3) everyone in the office gave gifts to each other, and took turns opening gifts and seeing what eveyone else got.
This led to a discussion about what we should do this year, and people's opinoins about gift giving to colleagues. Two people thought we should exchange names. One thought we really shouldn't exhange gifts at all.
I feel that gift giving should be an individual decision. I don't really like drawing names because it limits who I give to, and sometimes I get someone's name that I really wouldn't give a gift to. I would rather set a limit on the amount to spend on gifts.
I have learned that it is easier to give gifts than to graciously accept gifts. So when someone gives me a gift I say thank you and accept the gift. I allow them to experience the joy of giving.I don't try to give a gift to everyone I think will give me a gift. This defeats the purpose of giving - it adds stress by trying to give enough gifts, trying to guess who might be giving me something.
Gift giving should be an expression of love and thankfulness for another person. It shouldn't be a chore, or a burden. The amount of money spent on a gift isn't important. Some of the best gifts cost little or no money.
I don't know what we will be doing in our office this holiday season, but I do know that I will try to find ways to express my thankfulness to the people I work with.