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    How To Actually Be Good At Giving Gifts, For Once And For All

    Get in touch with your inner Leslie Knope, waffles and all.

    My feelings on giving gifts can be best summed up by Cher Horowitz: "'Tis a far, far better thing doing stuff for other people."

    But over the years — thanks to my large family and gift-happy friends — I've come up with some foolproof present-buying strategies so that I'm not empty-handed and hopeless in mid-December. Here are some of my best tips:

    1. Pay attention to what they complain about.

    2. Like a good party, presents can be themed.

    3. That said, don't limit yourself to doing all your shopping in one store if it doesn't *really* make sense.

    4. If you can't make a theme work, try giving yourself some other arbitrary rules.

    5. Make like a gift-giving student, and take notes.

    6. Buy early, and buy often.

    7. Look at their social media to figure out what they're ~lusting~ after.

    8. Depending on the person, an experience might make for a way better gift than an object.

    9. Silly but meaningful tchotchkes are usually pretty great, too.

    10. Don't be afraid to show off a little bit of your personality.

    11. Consider getting them something they wouldn't buy for themselves.

    12. When in doubt, ask!

    13. But it's also completely ok if it's not the absolute, most perfect gift ever.

    14. Most important: make them feel seen.