4 gifts you need to give yourself

During this weeks of ultimate Christmas gift guides *2016 edition* I am here to share with you yet another guide but these gifts are the kind you ought to give yourself. Once you have acquired one or more of these consider yourself ready to face almost any social situation.


  • Learn how to refill a stapler

Seriously, this is the best piece of advice I could ever give you, and the best present you can give yourself. You have no idea how useful this simple task turns out to be in a working environment. I've seen graduated people around me that at the empty sound of the stapler looked at it with panic in their eyes. Then dropped it on the desk and left the papers haphazardly on the table. There's nothing more convincing about someone's work ethic than seeing them do something basic and useful for the whole office, like inserting new staples in the stapler. I've seen staplers of many shapes and colours and, trust me, they all work the same. Does it sound slightly wrong? Is it just me?

  • Learn something about alcoholic drinks

Know when it's best to ask for a glass of wine instead of a bright blue cocktail. Don't be afraid of naming the specific whiskey or gin that you prefer. It's OK if you don't like beer; chances are that, in your group, there's a beer enthusiast who knows his stuff, let him talk about what he's drinking. Sooner or later you will meet someone who does and you will be happy to know about that foreign ale. Try cider instead. And three tequilas are a good idea only in very few occasions that I won't state here.

  • Read

Pick a book and read something new at least once a year. Before you ask, no, Vogue doesn't count, nor the movie version of a novel. You don't want to be the only one in a group saying that you can't remember the last thing you read; probably 'The little Prince' when you were still in school. It doesn't have to be a Russian book or something that doesn't interest you, pick a young adult series if you wish, or pick a short book, one with pictures, or an Audiobook if it fits your daily routine. You have literally nothing to lose and all to gain.

  • Master at least one dish

A real one, not spaghetti on toast (if you're Aussie), or baked beans on toast (if you're British). If you're Italian, pasta and ready-made sauce is not a real dish either. But salads totally count! I'm a huge fan of salads, you wouldn't believe the endless possibilities. It's great to have a statement dish, mine, hear hear, it's a salad. Perfect for all sort of events because nobody ever think about salad. And in this Gluten-free world we live in, it turned out to be a pretty useful skill. I did try to bake lasagne from scratch once. Just that one time, too much work.

While writing I could hear in my head the voices of some of my friends complaining how they've never cared for half of this stuff and they are still doing great. Other people I know would add something completely different, very important nonetheless. Here's a list of what they'd add: 
always wear new clean shoes, be able to apply mascara in a moving vehicle, plant seeds, know how to bake bread, have a Pinterest wedding board, use the Force, know at least how to open the bonnet of your car and check the oil level, learn not to care about others' opinions, learn another language, act in a play, figure out your ideal job, you're a wizard Harry, walk on high heels, get a driving license, climb a mountain, go on an adventure, master the art of applying nail polish on your right hand, write a book, turn frogs into princes, turn beasts into princes, turn princes into ogres, become an ogre, roar.

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