Sharing your life with a partner is one of those things that, if you do it right, enriches every part of your life. Sure, no relationship is without its rocky patches. If a husband and wife do not have at least one habit each that drives the other up the wall, then it’s fair to wonder if they are pod people. But let’s be honest for a moment – those tricky times are a price worth paying for a relationship that works, right?
We see a lot of situations on TV – particularly in commercials, weirdly – where the relationship works because the woman is the hyper-functional part of the couple. Making breakfast, lunch and dinner (sometimes all at the same time). Paying bills, arranging appointments, keeping a house like a palace. The man, if he appears at all, is more or less an imbecile, oblivious to everything happening around him as if the world just happens to him. If he has a use, it’s rooted in brute strength.
Now, while this trope has its roots in a certain kind of reality – women really are better at multitasking and men, generally, have a more straight-down-the-line approach – it’s not fair to either part of the couple. You are a team – together you are stronger than the sum of your parts and when you work together everything’s easier, more fun. And just as, sometimes, your partner will hopefully spoil you, it’s only fair that sometimes you pick out a gift that lets him know how grateful you are to have him around.
But aren’t men hard to buy for? It’s a lot harder than buying gifts for your kids. If we’re talking about cliches that are rooted in truth, the one about men being strong and silent is one with a lot of fact behind it. (In fact, it can be a destructively true one – as http://www.everydayhealth.com/news/why-depression-underreported-men/ shows, men are less likely to seek help for issues with mental health).
On a lighter note, it can lead to conversations like the following:
“So, what do you want for your birthday?”
“Oh, I don’t mind. Don’t make a fuss, I’m sure I’ll love whatever you get!”
“But is there anything special you really want?”
“Not really – I’d be happy with a nice dinner and a card.”
All of which may be true – but part of what keeps a relationship magical is those unexpected treats and surprises. And so sometimes, if he’s not going to give any hints, you need to use your initiative to pick something out for him.
My Initiative? Uh-oh!
Yep, fair enough, sometimes it’s not that easy and without some guidance you’re going to be flummoxed. That’s why it’s time for a few tips for outside-the-box gifts that will suit your man, whatever his personality.
Gifts For The Man Who Likes Things Simple
Some men are wired to know what they like and stick with it. In some ways, these are the hardest to buy for. If you ask what they want, they may note that they’re missing some bits for their drill, but they’ll buy them themselves anyway. They want, they buy, they have. Anyway, where’s the fun in practical gift-giving?
For this kind of man, a silk kimono or salsa dancing lessons are not going to be gifts that go down well. However, a collection of books on a subject close to his heart shouldn’t be hard to find. Plus, it’s easy to play detective and see which books he has and doesn’t have – rather than fishing for clues, just look on his bookshelves and cross off anything you see.
Gifts For Artist
If he’s artistic, then pick something that gives that side of his personality free rein. Paints and canvas, yes, but more than that. Book a weekend away somewhere with stunning views. Give him the chance to paint something breathtaking. Or alternatively, if he’s a snappy dresser, places like https://www.frostnyc.com/collections/earrings-for-men will allow you to pick out something to fit his style. Embrace the chance to step outside the usual gifts.
Gifts For The Man Who Loves The Kitchen
Kitchen based gifts range from the small to the large. If he has a habit of over- or under-cooking part of a meal, then he’d appreciate a handy kitchen timer to keep better time. If he likes to try something new every time, then a membership for a recipe club will be perfect. These take the form of a delivery every week or month that contains fresh ingredients and instructions for a meal which is innovative, healthy and delicious.
Gifts For The Man Who Wants To Improve His Mind
It’s been proven that – although we are more receptive to learning when we are younger – as adults, the more we seek to learn, the better it is for our brains. Homer Simpson once said “Every time I learn something new, it pushes some old stuff out”. And there are some men who have taken this idea to heart, but not all men feel this way.
Learning something – anything – new is a laudable goal at any stage of life. So if you have a husband or boyfriend who idly or more seriously mentions wanting to improve his mind in any way, it’s a great way to gift him something he’s going to love. Sign him up for a language app, for example. There are some good free ones, but to get the depth of learning that really works and sticks you will need to pay.
Alternatively, if his mind is less on the arts side and more with the sciences, maybe he’d like to get into Astronomy. A beginners’ telescope along with a guide to the night skies could launch a hobby that will have him channeling Brian Cox quicker than you can say “Proxima Centauri”. (Which might be very quick, if he doesn’t go for the language app and you decide to use it yourself.)