Give the Gift of Quality Time This Holiday Season

Grandparents with kids and grandkids

The holidays can be as guilt-inducing, stress-creating and frazzling as they are festive, delicious and memorable. Just ask any family.

So how do you decrease the stress factor and increase the happy memories? A recent holiday survey by GreatCall of more than 1,000 people, from ages 25 to 65+, asked what different generations look forward to most during the holiday season. We learned that younger and older generations are more on the same page than we expected – and really just want to spend quality time with family!

The survey found:

  • Nearly 50% of older adults feel more connected to friends and family over the holiday season, and nearly 60% of younger adults feel more connected to their older family members during the holidays.
  • Almost half of older adults say they’re most looking forward to extra quality time with family.
  • Gift giving isn’t necessarily a top priority for older or younger generations. 55% of older adults prefer quality time over traditional gifts, and only 6% of older adults are most looking forward to gift exchanges.
  • 26% of older adults are excited for seasonal food and desserts, so make sure to prepare the family favorites, and have them bring your childhood treats.

Gift ideas are notoriously one of the most challenging aspects of the holidays, but now that we know quality time is the most valued gift, this task should be easier than ever.

Making the Most of Quality Time This Holiday Season

  • For those that live far away or may not be able to take the time they want with family members, look for other ways to share experiences like FaceTime or Skype – using a tablet or a smartphone like the Jitterbug Smart2. Research has found that using video chatting platforms like Skype to connect with friends and family can help with depression in older adults.
  • If you are giving a gift, give an experience you can share together! Make a book of tickets for future get-togethers (brunches, walks with the family, game nights, etc.) – this gives you both something to look forward to.
  • Have grandma talk you through her family’s gingerbread cookie recipe – and bake them together. (Yes, even on the phone or video chat.)
  • During your family’s gift change, share a memory for every gift opened. Don’t forget to document with photos!

This holiday survey confirms that for both older and younger generations, feeling connected is key, and quality time with family is very important. Nearly half (47%) of older adults wish for happiness above all else this holiday season. Friends and family should take the time to learn and understand what will bring their relatives the most happiness – and more often than not, the answer will be quality time.

Check out our infographic based on the survey below!

Infographic about the benefits of spending quality time with family during the holidays.
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