The holidays can be a crazy, stressful time for many people. In the whirlwind of preparation, it’s easy to lose sight of the essence of the season which is really about love and togetherness. So, how to focus on the fun instead of getting caught up in the stress? Here are a few ideas:
1. Simplify Being buried under a mountain of decorations is anything but fun. Why not take the occasion to give little used decorations to those in need? Take stock of your inventory, pare it back and give the extra to charity. It will be less to store and you’ll feel great about giving to those less fortunate.
2. Avoid the sales Though the prospect of saving money may be tempting, I’m convinced that the stress of navigating crowded malls outweighs any financial gain. Where possible, consider shopping online or get a head start before the masses overtake the stores.
3. Give experiences Nothing is more valuable than time spent with loved ones. In the spirit of the season, give an experience which can provide memories and connection without contributing to senseless clutter. Tickets to a play? A gift certificate to a restaurant or a spa? Dance lessons?
4. Say what you want If there is something specific that you'd like, why not be upfront when a friend or relative asks? You’ll make shopping easier for them and you'll be happy with their gift!
5. Give your time Your time and attention is the most valuable gift you can give. Whether it’s volunteering to feed hungry people or cooking a meal for a friend, spending time together is most important. After all, the things that matter most are never things.