Below are ten guidelines I follow to simplify my Christmas. They don’t guarantee a stress free Christmas but they sure do help. Neither do they eliminate outside pressures to conform to the rest of society but we can make changes to better suit our princles. I hope you find them helpful as it is possible to have a very merry Christmas without all the expense, over indulgence, stress and clutter.
- Get organised ahead of time. Whether you have big plans or small the more you have sorted ahead of time the smoother everything will run and the more relaxed you will be when the festivities begin.
- Declutter ahead of time. For me, nowadays, this is easy. However if you have kids pass on the toys they no longer play with or are broken. If you are having visitors get rid of all the excess stuff out of the guest room. Have the kitchen decluttered so the cooking tools you need are all close at hand. Clear away space wasting items in other areas of the home to make room for the festivities…
- Keep decorating to a minimum and/or recruit helpers. A home can look festive without being over cluttered with decorations. It may even look more tasteful. There is no need to take on this task alone, get the whole family in on decking the halls. As they say, the more the merrier and what better way to prime the whole family for the holiday season.
- Keep gift giving to a minimum ~ Don’t be overindulgent with children and consider convincing other friends and family memebers to reduce the gift giving. Both sides of my family do a secret Santa these days. When I suggested it they were only too keen to comply. It was as if they were waiting for someone to get the ball rolling on that idea.
- Be prepared for guests ~ Whether they are staying overnight or just dropping in for a drink make preparations way ahead so that there is no last minute rushing about, tidying, cleaning, decluttering or shopping.
- Minimise travel ~ In Australia where we celebrate a summer Christmas there is a lot of outdoor activity. Trips to the beach and road trips to visit family are the norm. Unfortunately rushing, alcohol, fatigue and traffic volumes can result in tragic accidents. Also travelling via other means is expensive at this time of year. For me any time is a good time to see family so I try not to travel too often at Christmas.
- Don’t over cater ~ Peoples stomachs do not increase in capacity over the holiday season. It is possible to enjoy all those wonderful holiday treats without overindulging. Resisting the temptation to do so is aided by not oversupplying in the first place.
- Don’t be a control freak and insist on doing everything yourself because you think this is the only way it will be done “right”. If you are the only one who cares how the tree is decorated, the menu is set, the gifts are wrapped … then perhaps it really doesn’t matter. In fact perhaps someone else might really enjoy being involved in their own special way.
- Don’t feel obliged to follow traditions you don’t necessarily enjoy. Christmas is a time to rejoice and be glad not suffer in silence letting everyone else have their way. With family consultation, begin new traditions that make you all happy, that fit with your simplicity goals. It is possible that everyone would be happy to make some changes and are waiting for someone to lead the way.
- No matter what happens, as I am sure there will be some things you just can’t change, make the most of it and have a wonderful holiday season.
Today’s Mini Mission
Today’s Declutter Item
Yay there have been more baseball collectables relinquished.
Eco Tip for the Day
Keep your motor vehicles well maintained not only so they last well but also so they run efficiently, and cause minimal emissions.
It matters not how fast I go, I hurry faster when I’m slow