The Merry Little Christmas Challenge
Every year it seems like Christmas has to be even better than last year - but not this Christmas! Mamas are finally saying 'enough is enough'! This year there has been a massive social trend towards essentialism, minimalism, mindfulness and sustainability, so what does that mean for Christmas time?
Here's a quick recap on what these trends mean:
Essentialism: Only doing what's essential in life, leaving out all the extras. Choosing your priorities/values and sticking to them.
Minimalism: Less stuff, less busy, less clutter and noise in our lives. Keeping our homes and schedules to a minimum.
Mindfulness: Having a full mind that is in the present moment - not a stressed, frazzled, multitasking, or absent one. Using your mind when you make choices, rather than just saying yes to everything. And considering things fully rather than mindlessly.
Sustainability: Making choices and living in a way that is considerate of having the least negative impact - on people, animals and the planet. It means being thoughtful of what is best long term, and who/what is going to be affected. It means considering what can be sustained.
So how does it relate to Christmas?
Well usually we throw all these things to the wind when it gets to the festive season and we are bombarded with a billion messages telling us to forget all our values and spend spend spend! and do more more more!
But NOT this year! I'm calling it the Merry Little Christmas Challenge. The main word being 'little'. Here's what it looks like.
The Merry Little Christmas Challenge
Fewer presents, more value. It's not about quantity anymore, it's really about quality - what will your family absolutely love, not just what would they like or want (or 'what else can I get to make this present bigger/enough/fill the stocking/look as special as Little John's present).
Less food, more enjoyment. We don't need to make loads and loads of foods, or pig out on junk food or alcohol. We can simply make simple meals and drinks - festive/special is an attitude, not an ingredient list.
Less rubbish. This year many families are committing to using less rubbish, because our holidays and celebrations shouldn't be disastrous for the environment. That means buying gifts and foods locally, wrapping gifts creatively (e.g. jars, recycled and decorated paper), and avoiding buying cheap plastic gimmicks and decorations.
Less mess. Yes, really. If we buy fewer gifts, don't waste our money on the throwaway plastic decorative items, and just make enough food to enjoy (and not have huge plates of wasted leftovers), then there is so much less mess to clean up.
Doing things as a family to make memories, instead of spending all our time stressing to get gifts at the crazy shops.
And you know what? I think that makes Christmas sound just a little bit more magical for everyone - thoughtful gifts, a much more peaceful to do list, happier parents and more time to make memories together.
Instead of trying to make Christmas just as good as, or better than, previous years, how about we commit to making this Christmas smaller. Let's make it more intimate, more memorable, more about people than things. Let's make it about simple, sweet memories with family and friends. Try seeing how little you can put on your to do list! Try seeing how few gifts you can buy this year! Try seeing how much less time you can spend at the shops.
No more big, wasteful, stressful, hectic, pressure-filled holidays. It's time to bring that magic back to Christmas. Let's truly have ourselves a merry little Christmas. Who's with me?
If you'd like to join the Merry Little Christmas challenge, below are some resources. There will be a few more articles over the next weeks to help us all get started too, so make sure to check back here or follow us on Facebook!
(P.S If you want family/relatives/friends to join you in simplifying Christmas this year, make sure to send this post to them!)