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Make it count: You can’t buy time but you can buy quality time with this year’s Christmas presents

Surveys show that we’re spending less time with our loved ones than ever before thanks to our busy lives. So when it comes to Christmas presents this year, it’s time to think how you can really make it count by giving quality time to friends and family.

Not enough hours in the day

A survey has estimated that one in 10 Britons leave the house at least once a week without seeing their children and quarter of parents said they were so busy they do not spend any time with their children at all.

Why? A fifth blame their hectic work schedules and nearly 50% blamed social media for distracting their children.

The trend isn’t new, but it is getting worse. In 2010 it was estimated that the average family spent just 49 minutes a day together. Today, it’s significantly less, and the time we do spend together is impinged on by digital distractions and outside influences.

The thing is, while it’s all too easy to beat ourselves up about it, most of us need a more realistic and meaningful solution than a major life overhaul. That means focusing on quality over quantity, and it could even apply to the Christmas presents we give this year.

How to create quality time

The nub of quality time is focusing on the people we are with without distraction. While we can all enjoy the anaesthesia of a TV show, movie or computer game, that’s about switching off. Quality time is a more nourishing experience.

In fact the dictionary defines it as giving your undivided attention. Be honest, when was your attention last undivided?

The good news is that while time in itself is hard to come by, all quality time requires is you. In that respect, it can be extremely simple to create. Eating dinner at the table together, going for a walk in the evening together, or reading the Sunday papers in bed together.

Finding the right space for quality time

What often helps however, is spending time in a space that isn’t associated with the daily grind; a reminder of household chores yet to be done. This is the reason that the mini break is so often considered such a luxurious use of time - and such a thoughtful Christmas present. It is also the root of what makes quality time so intrinsically associated with a spa experience.

Spas are not simply places of detox and pampering. They are places where mobile phones are switched off and feel-good factor is at its highest. They are peaceful and prioritise self care.

They are places where space and a lack of pressure mean irritation melts away and your guard can come down. You can sit, listen or simply be with a friend or partner, and many spas are family friendly as well.

The quality of anticipation

When it comes to giving quality time to someone, the beauty of going away is that you can enjoy the anticipation together as well.

At Spabreaks.com for example, Gift of Spa Vouchers as Christmas presents mean that you can spend time considering where to go together from more than 300 spa destinations across the UK, without making cost a factor. There are other options too - you can choose a package voucher at a specific spa, or give your loved one complete freedom of choice with a monetary voucher from as little as £30.And don’t forget we have multiple delivery options too.

For most of us it’s pretty much impossible to give more time. After all, if we could, we would have already done it. However, it is possible to make the time we have with our loved ones count, and as it happens, quality is something you really can wrap up and put under the Christmas tree.

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