Getting a gift for a friend who is struggling can be stressful. If you’re like me, you want to give them something meaningful and useful, but not something pretentious or pushy. What I love about these gifts is that they aren’t a “hey look on the bright side” kind of gifts, but rather a “hey, I can tell you’re stressed and I want to help” kind of gifts. Bonus: you can get them all on Amazon, saving you a trip to the store, and you can send it to anyone pretty much anywhere. Click the titles to check out what we found:
Project Semicolon was founded a few years ago as a suicide prevention movement (yeah, we dig that!). Their missionstates: “Within the belief that suicide is generally preventable, the mission of Project Semicolon is to help reduce the incidents of suicide in the world through connected community and greater access to information and resources. We believe that suicide prevention is the collective responsibility of each and every person on the planet.” You can also purchase gifts directly from their site here.
Book: Man's Search for Meaning
Viktor Frankl was a holocaust survivor, psychologist, and renowned author. He not only describes his experiences in an internment camp, but he discusses the patterns that he noticed in those who were able to overcome the psychological, spiritual, and physical challenges of such a dark age. This book is not only enlightening, he says that any challenge can be overcome if we are able to find meaning in the suffering. A must read for anyone affected by the woes of mental health; directly or not.
Tea is a part of many cultures and used as stress relievers, sleep promoters, and to soothe many aches and pains. There is literally a tea for everything! What I love about a teapot present is that is versatile and leaves your friends up to their imaginations on what they want to use it for. If you feel like they could use a break, add a little note that says, "Hey, your life seems hectic right now. When you get a chance to just relax, try some of this tea to ease your mind." It really says something about how you feel about their comfort and less about how you think they should be changing their own lives.
This desk-friendly zen garden is really fun to play with, and makes de-stressing a cinch. My last job at a mental health agency was often very time-consuming and emotionally taxing, so when I had a chance to sit down with my supervisor at her desk, I loved to rake designs into the sand while we chatted. It was like I was focusing on my garden making while also releasing all of the pressure of the day or week in that one conversation. Give one to a friend at work or someone who could really put it to use!
Aromatherapy seems like a new "fad" but truly it's been around for centuries. The ancient medicinal practice of Ayurveda has many uses for spices and herbs in their medical healing, but the smells were a major part of that process. We all know that lavender is calming, and citrus is energizing, but there is something fun about playing with all the different smells to create an ambience that makes you feel really happy and at peace. Give the gift of a good smell to your friends and family and you'll be surprised at how much they enjoy it.
There are a lot of types of hot pads on the market, and many of them are infused with calming smells as well. What I love about this eye pillow is how it is designed to help soothe migraines and other ailments that occur for many people who suffer from mental illness. Depression and anxiety are linked to more headaches, and you'll really see a difference with this thoughtful gift. Pair it with some soothing bath salts or candles to really make it something that says you want your friends to get some great relaxation time in.
Many foot massagers are designed to ease foot and leg pain. However, what many people don't know is that the art of reflexology has also shown to help with stress reduction and nerve stimulation. Even the way you walk can affect pains and strains in your back and head the same way that you see somatic symptoms in mental illness. While it likely won't cure a mental illness, it does provide an extra does of stress relief and is incredibly reasonable and fun to have around.
Art therapy is a thing for a reason- it really works well for many people! We know you've seen these everywhere and maybe you've been avoiding purchasing one because the hype is just too annoying. But when you give it a try, we hope you see that it can work a lot like a zen garden. You're using your hands while your brain does some necessary processing and debugging. We all need a little bit of that in our lives, not to mention the fact that at the end of it you produce something pretty and enjoyable to look at.
You might be thinking, "Aren't all journals autobiographical?" Well, yes, and no. We often write down our stresses, hopes and dreams, etc. when we write in a journal. But what we don't realize is that we can miss necessary details about us and our lives. Using a guided journal can work a lot like a therapist would. You are asked to explore parts of yourself that you may be avoiding but are necessary for you to process. This journal is a good family or friend gift because it says something about how meaningful you think they and their life is.
So, when you aren't sure what to get your friends and family for the holiday season this year, consider these options. There's never harm in wanting to gift something that is not just beautiful, but also useful!
Here at SAVE ME FROM haircare products aren't just our passion, it's what drives our donations for mental health and suicide prevention. We love to help others feel good on the outside, but recognize that feeling good on the inside is also part of the process. When we launch next year, consider gifting one of our products to your family and friends as a way to help your dollar go to helping them and many others!