Hey you! Yes, you, who has made or participated in a gift to someone in the last month. What have you given, really? It’s likely you’ve given a physical object, a possession that the receiver now has to provide space and care for. One could say, you’ve stolen time from the receiver, because you’ve added to their presumably already huge mountain of stuff, which is becoming increasingly harder to manage. Stuff is a burden. More stuff is a bigger burden. Don’t give that to your friends!
I know that’s a bleak picture I’m painting. But it’s true.
If you really want to make a gift, you basically have two options: the first is to give an experience, not a thing. The second is to ask what the receiver needs and get them exactly that and nothing more, in the highest quality you can afford. But if I’m the potential receiver, the best option remains: don’t gift me anything.