Giving at Christmas may be good for you but it's a complicated business

Giving conveys caring and generosity - but it can undermine feelings of worth in recipients

If you are a bit financially embarrassed this Christmas, maybe you could offer some time in support of a favoured relative, cause or carol service. Photograph: PA

If you are a bit financially embarrassed this Christmas, maybe you could offer some time in support of a favoured relative, cause or carol service. Photograph: PA

Much though you may wish to deny the passage of time, Christmas will soon be upon us. As well as the tinsel and office parties, Christmas invariably brings a focus on charitable giving.

Give with a glad heart this Christmas. Recent research in psychology has found that the act of giving may really be more beneficial for those who give than those who receive. 

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