2017 Holiday Gift Ideas for Highly Sensitive People

 

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It's that time of year! A collective time for giving AND receiving. Whether you create a holiday gift list like me and literally ASK for what you want, or you hint to your friends and family via Pinterest, either way, I understand that gift giving can be a bit stressful as a HSP.

These are some of my favorite items that nourish my highly sensitive body, mind, and soul...and some that I have on my list this year and still need to try out, but seemed way cool so I added them anyway. I've included actual gift items as well as experiential gifts. As a High Sensation Seeker I'm all about experiencing all that life has to offer. So here you go! 20 of my top 2017 gift ideas. Enjoy!

1. The Ohm Grounding Yoga Mat
{Use the Code: karina15 to get 15% off your order!}

Why did I get this?
→ Lower back pain
→ Struggles with feeling grounded consistently (my life story)
→ Stress from working many hours on my computer each day
→ Little time in the winter to get outside and plant my bare feet on the ground (yes, we have cold winters in New York!)
→ Emotional ups and downs during times of major transitions

I've been using this grounding mat for 2 weeks now and...I'm being honest here...
→ Lower back pain went from an annoying, consistent 6 to a 2 (I like to rate how I feel)
→ Might sound crazy, but since I started grounding, my husband and I have gotten clarity about where we want to live long-term and grow some roots to start our family! (We've been moving every 2 years since 2010. It's been quite the adventure, but quite exhausting. And I'm not talking moving down the block, I'm talking about NY to the Caribbean to Colorado to San Diego to New York to Virginia...). It feels sooo yummy to plan where we want to *oh my gosh* BUY a home! Never thought I say that.
→ This December 2017 Mercery in Retrograde has shown itself, full force. And yet, I haven't gotten as frustrated as I did in the past. Maybe because while I'm working I'm standing on my grounding mat? And when I'm grounded my creative, inspired ideas flow better? Yes. And yes.
→ Yesterday I cried. For like an hour. Balllingggg my eyes out. Haven't cried that hard in a long time. I thought the crying would never stop. One thought let to the next which led to the next and I kept spiraling. Thankfully I had the sense to strap on my grounding band and within 5 minutes of more crying, all of a sudden. Silence. Peace. Quiet. Nothing. I will admit, before I did this, I went almost 5 days without getting on my grounding mat. Eek! What did I do before I had this mat? No wonder 2016 was a dark year for me...

Just sayin'. These have been my observations. Best thing you can do it try it out yourself. Experiment and see what changes you experience. I've been keeping track in an excel sheet. I wanted to see what this was about. Even though there is actual scientific research that this is a real thing, I wanted to be my own scientist. So I did. And there you have it. 2 weeks of results that feel pretty cool to write out.

2. Meditation Cushion from Sittin' Pretty Still

This was on my Christmas list last year, and is something I use consistently. What I've learned is that by creating a meditation SPACE with a cushion and alter of some sort, it almost pulls me INTO sitting for meditation. It is a reminder and is more welcoming than meditating in bed and falling asleep. Some of the best inspired ideas come from a few minutes of quieting my mind. And this cushion is the seat that allows me to feel comfortable while doing it. It's a star shape and makes it easier to sit cross legged. But really, you can sit in many different positions and still feel comfortable. Plus its cute. So yeah, maybe this is for the girls, but either way. This meditation cushion or A meditation cushion. I recommend one.


3. The Light Within Meditation Tea

Alright, I will admit, this is a self-promo one on the list, but I wouldn't put it on here if I didn't love it. Haha. Andy over at Plum Deluxe invited me to create my own tea blend. And with the help of my amazing Nutritionst, she muscle tested a tea blend to help calm my adrenals, settle my nerves, and help me relax and be present so I can more easily connect to my inner light within. It has an amazing aroma, its organic, fair-trade, and hand-blended! All the good stuff. You can order a bag here.


4. Therapeutic-Grade Essential Oils (I use Young Living. These days you can find them everywhere...Amazon, local distributer, their website...)

Specifically...
Lavender 15ml Essential Oil by Young Living Essential Oils (Calming the nerves, sleep, and also for skin burns and blisters)
Peace & Calming II 5 ml Essential Oil by Young Living Essential Oils (Will help you fall asleep in less than 5 minutes)
Joy Essential Oil 15ml by Young Living Essential Oil (For climbing out of depression and raising your vibration in general to a higher frequency. It has rose oil, which vibrates at a high frequency and can be used to connect with the Queen of Angels, Mother Mary. When I feel down in the dumps and stuck in a period of depression, I make sure to put this on my wrists every morning until I feel a shift. The aromatic properties in the oil sends a signal to your brain, which then releases certain brain chemicals to balance your emotions. It's a great way to tap into your body's natural healing properties.)
Thieves 15ml Essential Oil by Young Living Essential Oils (For your immune system. Put it on the bottom of your feet before bed and it'll work while you sleep, helping build your natural defense mechanisms to fight off whatever comes your way.)


5. WEIGHTED BLANKETS PLUS LLC - ADULT LARGE WEIGHTED BLANKET - TAN - COTTON/FLANNEL (72"L x 42"W) 11lb LIGHT PRESSURE

Haven't used this one yet, but it's definitely on my list to try. I am totally a blanket person. Especially in the winter. And especially when I've hit my max. I've been known to ask for a blanket at a party when my High Sensation Seeking radar hits its limit and tells me I'm done for. If you try this, let me know how you like it.


6. Philips Wake-Up Light with Sunrise Simulation and Radio, White, HF3505

I don't know about you but getting the right environment to fall alseep and stay asleep can be tricky. I like pitch black while sleeping but LOVE waking up to sunlight and birds chirping. This is another thing on my list that I haven't tried yet but hear good things about. Instead of waking up to your phone light in the morning, why not wake up slowly to a wake-up light. (If you are lucky enough to have a room with natural lighting in the morning, I am SO happy for you. I desire this especially for the future house we buy. But for those of you who live in basements or dark corner rooms, I'd check this out.)


7. Hydro Flask Stainless Steel Water Bottle

Water bottles are my best friend...and I've tried them ALL. My favorite are steel water bottles, but specifically the Hydro Flask Stainless Steel Water Bottle found on Amazon. Stainless steel bottles can be taken on any and every adventure you find yourself in; traveling to a new city, county, or on a biking trip. Glass water bottles on the other hand...not so much. (Needed to learn this the hard way. Let's not talk about it.) If you're looking for a good one for you or your HSS/HSP friend or family member, look no further. 

8. Green Chef Subscription
{Use the link above to get a FREE BOX to try for yourself}

I've been using Green Chef for about 2 1/2 years now. I will start off by admiting that no, its not the best for the environment, BUT a lot of containers the food comes in are recyclable. Green Chef delivers a box of ingredients and about 3 recipes to cook for lunch/dinner every week. Best thing is that its organic and they have gluten free meal options, vegan, vegetarian, paleo, and ketogenic. You can choose which meal type you want every week and skip weeks if you're not feelin' it. 


9. Any Book from My Recommended Books List Here



10. Sensitive: The Untold Story Documentary

If you haven't seen the documentary created by Elaine Aron yet, get it. The benefit this documentary gave to me was its gift of giving me the language to talk about the HS trait to others. There was nothing in the documentary I didn't already 'know', but it did help give me the confidence to talk about my trait from a place of strength and empowerment rather than shame and weakness. This is perfect for a HSP friend or family member who you think MIGHT be HSP or someone who just learned about their trait and need the basics of understanding themselves on a deeper level. 

11. The SHHHOWERCAP

This is for my HSS/HSP girls (or guys with man buns). If you're like me and have been trying to 'train' your hair to not need to be washed everyday in order to look good, this is a shower cap you'll want to have around. Before finding this I used to snag the plastic ones from hotels and within a few months, the band would fall apart and I'd have to wait until the next trip to snag another one. What also annoyed me about the hotel shower caps was that they could never hold my entire bundle of hair. There would always be hair flying out and I would still have to blow dry my hair after getting out of the shower. Indeed to some, this may be a 'luxury' item, but that's why its on the gift list! And actually, its really not that bad price wise, if you think about the fact that you'll likely not need to buy another one ever again (unless you want a different color). 

12. Homemade Dry Shampoo w/ Brush

To go along with the hair theme, and for those of you who enjoy making your own gifts to save some money, homemade dry shampoo is a must have. Dry shampoo is one beauty product I use consistently, mostly because of having sensitive skin. Finding a dry shampoo product that wasn't packed with crazy chemicals that would leech into my body (and brain!) felt challenging. Look no further, this is an easy thing to make right now. (I put mine in a low, flat mason jar and use an old, cleaned blush brush to brush onto my roots. Here are two recipes to try:

--> Here is one recipe I like: DIY Dry Shampoo for Dark or Light Hair 


13. Jane Iredale Makeup


I love this brand because it is one of the best rated makeup companies with the least amount of harsh chemicals. My body seems to respond well to them consistently so I keep coming back for more! This is HSP friendly, so naturally, its on the list.


14. Peter Pauper Journals

ALL of them! But here is 1: Cosmology Journal (Diary, Notebook) 

Journaling is a HSS/HSPs BEST way to sort through the deep thoughts of the mind and intense feelings of the emotions. Journaling has been such a life saver for me since I was a little girl and will continue to promote until the day I die. My favorite company to buy from is Peter Pauper. They feel magical and special, and I get excited to see them and write in them in the morning when I wake up (instead of check my phone), or before bed (if I can't fall asleep because of too many anxious thoughts). 

15. Tile Mate - Key Finder. Phone Finder. Anything Finder - 1-pack

You know those days where you are just NOT present? Where your phone is in your hand and you scramble around the house looking for it? What about when you (or your kid) leave your keys somewhere and they are no where to be found? This is a fun gift item that was given to me last year. Haven't had to use it yet, thankfully, but I know my keys will be found if they are ever lost. 

16. Shutterfly 2017 Calendars

One of my favorite things to give parents are a full year calendar of the best pictures from the year prior (or a trip we went on together). Parents especially still prefer hard copy calendars over digital ones, and for my parents, it brought them GREAT joy to excitedly turn the page to see the picture for the next month. If you have a little bit of time to put this together, I promise you, this will be a meaningful, memorable gift that can be appreciated all year round. 


17. 90-Minute Massage

Okay, okay, so there are massages...and then there are 90-MINUTE MASSAGES. Major difference. If you've never had a 90-minute massage (and you like massages), you are definitely missing out. This time length allows me to seriously relax and leave my head, knowing that I don't have to pay attention and be mindful of every move the massage therapist makes. Its deeply relaxing and a great way to 'check-out' over soothing habits like boredom eating, watching tv, scrolling through social media, video games, etc. If you're concerned about a person massaging you for that long and unsure if you'll be uncomfortable, test out a few massage therapists who you jive with their energy. Also tell them you'd prefer to relax and not talk during your 90-minute massage (some are chatty...as am I!) to get the full relaxation experience.


18. WWOOF Volunteer Experience

Okay, so this has nothing to do with dogs. But it IS an organization and life experience that has changed my life. WWOOF stands for: World Wide Opportunity on Organic Farms. Did you know there are organic farms ALL over the world who are looking for help? Did you know that by giving a few hours a day on their farm, in exchange, you can travel to any country you want to and live basically for free? I will be honest, not all farms are great, but there are many that will put you up in a great space and feed you, so in the afternoon you can explore your heart out. In 2010 my husband and I booked a flight to Hawaii and stayed there for 3 months. This was one of the best and most memorable travel experiences of my life AND one that brought my husband and I together in ways we couldn’t even imagine. If you ever want to hear a story, let me know. Hey, maybe I’ll even share our videos and journal entries with these stories one of these days. Either way, this is an awesome experience that allows you to connect with the Earth, the locals, and see what its like to live in another part of the world, for very little money. This is truly for a HSS/HSP who is looking for direction and meaning in their life. I’d be happy to answer any questions you have about it!


19. Air BnB Weekend Get-Away

There’s nothing like a stay-cation than getting on Air BnB and finding a cute place to stay that is not your home. I’ve become a great fan of being a tourist in my own city (well, island, since I live on Long Island). I used to be bombarded with the belief that, “There’s nothing to do.” However, this is simply NOT true. No matter where you live, I’m a firm believer there is adventure awaiting just around the corner. Whether you go for a long weekend with your special someone and plan a hiking trip, hit up as many yoga classes in a new town as possible, or you prefer a personal retreat experience where you sit by the fire of a cozy private, quiet space to read and journal without disruption, Air BnB is a good place to find an adventure, or relaxing space, right when you need it. Plus, getting out of your familiar elements and breaking pattern has been shown to create new neural pathways in your brain. So if you’re feeling stuck in a certain area of your life, book an overnight stay-cation trip to create space for an opening, a shift, a miracle in your perception. Works every time :)


20. Cleaning Services

The main love language I feel so nourished to receive is Acts of Service. When someone can take the load off of me and either help me out or get someone to help me with the basic everyday living to-do's, I feel loved, supported, and spacious. I love a clean house but its not something I crave to engage in like some. To have someone come to my house once or twice a month to do a deep cleaning of the things I don't always get around to, to ME...would be...heaven. Consider the person you are getting a gift for and what THEIR love language is. Give to them in that way. For ideas, visit The 5 Love Languages site here.

 

Well that's all folks! Until next year ;)

With love,
Karina Antonopoulos

P.S. Come on over to the A Place for Highly Sensitive People Facebook Group. Share your gift ideas and comment on which gift idea from this list you like the best!




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