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Flood of gifts

Sergio García Gutiérrez, specialist in child psychology

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Since Christmas is approaching, tell you thatthe children often do not have time to assimilate all the toys they receive.. It usually happens that a few gifts capture their attention from the beginning, and others are forgotten stored somewhere in the house,they even receive several models of the “mo da toy”, they areshort of other types of things, which need more.

On those Christmas days, children usually get “a little out of control” by not having a schedule as structured as when they go to class, and they are also surrounded by family that they do not see often, have constant visits at home or go to the house of grandparents, uncles and cousins.

But the highlight of Christmas is when you arrive with the gifts.Receiving such a large amount of stimuli in the same day can overexcite children and,generally,this situation exceeds their ability to control. It is as if we, the adults, were given a house, a car and also touched the Christmas fat All in the same day! Yes, it is an immense happiness, like the one children feel these days, but logically it overwhelms. For this reason, it should not surprise you that children do not sleep well at night or that they are especially rebellious on Christmas Eve, before the arrival of Santa Claus, or the night of Kings.

For parents it is difficult to control the excesses of those days, so I can think of some ideas on how to organize the giftsof the children of the nearby Navida… The first thing is to have an idea of how many people are going to give things to your children those days and, thus, not give away excessively. It’s about preventing your child from joining in too many gifts On the other hand, saber what giftsthey will receive. We can suggest gifts to uncles, grandparents, cousins and make them complementary to ours. Thus, we facilitate, in part, the work to them and avoid repetitions, or receive gifts of little interest. One idea is to vary the type of gifts they will receive between house toys, outdoor games, books, songs, stationery, etc.

I can think of a practical idea, and that is to know how to rotate the toys, that is, once they have opened the gifts, try to leave a few out of sight, and take them out later (weeks or months later). It is not about hiding them, but about making it easier for you to use first those that have surprised you the most and, as you get tired of them, to be able to “release” others.

You can make suggestions to the family. Do not let the gifts arrive “blindly” and uncontrolled. You can suggest what we think your children would like best, or may be more beneficial or useful.

It will depend on each family, but it may be that, in order not to hurt susceptibilities when making the request for “containment” or the above suggestions, it is best that the part corresponding to each family does it. That is, the mother can talk to the maternal grandparents and uncles, and the father with his own. It is that the family becomes very susceptible to these matters… Of course, you have to be understanding and kind to the requests, because deep down the family wants to make the children happy. But keep in mind that the little ones (and more the smaller) are happy with very little. Therefore, with a “Don’t you think it would be better…?”, or “Maybe what he likes the most is…”, or “It’s a good idea, although you have to keep in mind that…”, “Well, the other day I was about to buy him …”… be enough to make you understand.

Ahhhh,do not forget to tell you that ephemeral gifts of the type go one day to the cinema, the circus, the zoo or any activity that is interesting to children, are an option that is often not taken into account, but that can perfectlyeplace conventional gifts that arrive in avalanche, and that they will soon end up in a corner. For the time of the gift, they serve the entrance tickets when possible, or a “voucher” for the show they decide. These “intangible” gifts can be even more appreciated by the little ones, since it means spending a pleasant time in the company of the family.

Try to make some gifts “necessary items”. For example, if you had to buy cologne from the little one anyway, then a bottle of cologne can come in handy. Of course, a bulk cologne because it would not look too good as a gift, but you all know that today there are cases of children’s colognes that delightthe peopleofP equeños with their favorite characters (Pocoyo, Caillou,Barbie …). The same for gels, pajamas, slippers and other items of clothing.

If the child is so small that he does not ask for anything because he is still a baby, “take advantage”, in the good sense of the word. It will be a saving for you and for the family. Clothes and hygiene products are a good and practical option, as you were going to need them anyway

If the child already speaks, but does not ask for anything, it is that he does not want anything in particular. Of course, you already know what their tastes are (favorite games with daddies, children’s characters …) and there you have success for sure.

If the child already asks for what he wants, it will depend on how long his letter to the Kings is, but try not to make it too long. It is good for children to express their desires, to choose what their main desires are, let’s say, three or four main desires. These are the ones you will receive together. After all, you will understand that you cannot have everything you want uncontrollably and effortlessly.

If at the end of it all, the avalanche of gifts occurs equally, you can try to, disguised or openly, set aside a few gifts for later. Children will enjoy more what they have now, and will get a surprise later. Like all this, you will be establishing a “healthyhabit” of enjoying with little and appreciating what you have,avoiding the avalanche of gifts at Christmas.

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