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Saturday, December 21, 2013

five ways to respond to unwanted presents...

Remember, people buy gifts because they love and appreciate us. It’s important to make them feel good about their decision even if you feel uncomfortable. Often times we find ourselves in awkward moments when we have to open a gift that we do not like. You have to hide your disappointment, embarrassment or speechlessness. 

With these five tricks you will be able to sail through any unwelcomed gift with ease. Take away the awkwardness of opening gifts you don’t like by having one of these responses. Use these tips with the same tone and tempo as if you liked the present. 
1.       Automatically hug, handshake or high-five the person – Say thank you then truly invade their personal space. Act like your football team just got a touchdown and you are looking for a physical connection to that play. It’s now awkward for both parties involved – which is good. It’s a deflection!
2.       Immediately start asking questions or making comments about the gift – Say Thank You then ask questions. This is a key phrase: “This gift is unbelievable.” Read the label on the box. This buys you time. Start going through the trusted who, what, where, when and how questions. Here are some examples: Who told you about this product, What are all the features, Where do you find gifts like this, When did you find the time to buy this and How does it make them feel that they invested time and energy in getting you that gift. A well place question diverts the uncertainty of the present. 
3.       Instantly Compliment the Thought – The minute you open a present excitingly thank them for thinking through such an interesting gift. Ask them where they came up with that idea to get you that present. Remind them that your favorite thing about them is their thoughtfulness. Use a big expression like, “Oh my goodness!!!!! How thoughtful of you!!!! I love how you think though every present you give!!!”
4.       Give yourself time to think – Nicely excuse yourself! Quickly find an excuse to leave the room. Some excuses are: using the restroom, getting another trash bag for the used wrapping paper, suddenly feeling thirsty or pretending you heard something outside. My son uses this technique and taught it to me. It works because you can come back with a well-rehearsed gratitude line for the present you had just received. Hopefully the need for approval by the gift giver is not as strong as before.
5.       Pretend the right way!- What if the person point-blank asks you if you like it???? Tell them “YES, and here’s why: because it will remind me of you.” Take the focus off the question by telling them how much you appreciate the reminder. This is now NOT a lie. You truly like the present because of what it represents. It’s not about yourself but the reminder this present will serve.
We have all heard the quote, “It is better to give then to receive.” The giver wants to feel good about the gift they just gave you. As a communication coach I know your gift giving and receiving will be better because of your creative new responses.
Merry Christmas!
Cara Lane  
Communication Coach 

Cara Lane can be summed up in two words = infectious enthusiasm. Cara’s high energy, expressive style will be a joy to your learning on life. She has won the hearts of people and has become known nationally as “America’s Speaker Sweetheart.” She has also toured the world and has become an internationally known motivational speaker and trainer. Cara Lane is the award winning top trainer for the world’s leading seminar company. She's a leader an ambassador for Weight Watchers. Cara has given over 10,000 hours of instruction on communication training.

*Lead photo created using the app A Beautiful Mess, available for sale here in the iTunes app store! Thanks ABM app for the creative tool!


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