There’s one thing your parents (probably) always tell you they want when it’s holiday/birthday season: For you to be happy.
While that’s 1) not always as easy as it seems and 2) pretty hard to present in a, you know, gift-able way, it’s not an entirely useless thing to say. There are more than a few ways to surprise and delight your parents without spending any money (and actually earning some in the process).
You might feel like we’ve tricked you, but we promise that if you can follow through on any of these your parents will be absolutely thrilled.
1. Surprise Them With Your Brand New Spring Internship
Your parents have probably worked incredibly hard to support you throughout your education. And what’s their goal? Making sure you can become your own person. An internship is the first step in securing a self-sufficient life for yourself and making them even prouder.
If you want to wow them, then buy them some company swag and put that underneath the tree. You’ll finally get an idea of what it is like that time they bought you an American girl doll or a Wii.
2. Blow Them Away With Your First Full-Time Job Offer Letter
Chances are, your parents already know that you’re looking for a job. It’s gonna be pretty hard to keep this secret from them until Christmas morning, the last night of Hanukkah, or whenever your preferred gift-giving holiday might fall. However, the payoff will be insanely high. They will be just as thrilled as you are (maybe even more).
If you’re too early in the process, making a little card that lets them know you got an interview for your dream job can make a pretty great stocking stuffer, too.
3. Show Off Your Entrepreneurial Side With Your Side Hustle
Can’t find a job (or just not ready for one yet)? Start your own business. It’s actually a lot easier than it sounds.
When you’ve got a side hustle, you basically own your own small business. Whether you’re a tutor, freelance writer, or even a dog walker, you’re building relationships with clients, selling your own service/product, and making money while you’re at it.
These four companies will do most of the client-finding, advertising, and administrative legwork for you (plus working for them totally rocks for your resume).
If you want to make it very official, start an LLC to manage the money you make. It’ll cost you a bit of your first check, but it might be worth it just to see the smile on your parent’s face when you’ve named your business after them (or the family poodle).
All fired up? Find your dream job, perfect internship, or fast-paced side hustle right here on WayUp.