Do any of these phrases sound familiar?
“I just can’t figure out what to get for so-and-so! It’s driving me nuts!”
“Shopping is just so stressful. The parking, the crowds…ugh!”
“What do I do with all this STUFF now? I’m so exhausted!”
Every year, it seems like there are more people fed up with the excess of the holidays, ready for a change. This time of year can be overwhelming for some, and not enjoyable at all. A recent post on becomingminimalist.com has me inspired to keep the conversation going and encourage others to take those steps to embrace experiences instead of stuff we don’t need. I definitely recommend giving that one a read - there are some eye-opening statistics and helpful tips. If more than half of us are receiving gifts we don’t need, and also wasting money on things other people don’t need, then it’s time to take a look at our current situation and work toward new habits that will reduce the stress and waste. It’s never too late to change your own outlook on gift giving and encourage your loved ones to do the same.
Earlier this week, I attended a meeting with local organizers, and we discussed clutter-free, organizer-friendly gift ideas. If gift-giving is a tradition your family members insist on, then suggest gifts of experience or things you can consume. My friend Janine Cavanaugh, the Helpful Organizer, put together a comprehensive list of clutter-free gifts. Check out Janine's blog post for some excellent gift ideas!
In last month’s post, I talked about the Danish concept of hygge (pronounced hoo-ga). I’m really sold on the idea that quality time and fun traditions bring on those warm fuzzy feelings we chase this time of year, and the stuff just brings stress. One thing worth mentioning - many people over schedule this time of year and get worn out. These ideas are not meant to burden you, but instead inspire new habits to replace the old ones. If you and your friends/family want to start dropping the gift-giving all together, here are some activities and traditions you can incorporate into not just the holidays, but all winter long:
Quality time indoors:
Get out around town:
Help family members decorate and/or declutter:
Are you working on changing your narrative around gift giving? What are your favorite yearly activities and traditions? I’d love to hear from you, feel free to comment down below.