It’s getting to be that time of the year again: Christmas. I love the holiday season, but I don’t love the chaos and clutter that can come with it. This year I’m going to intentionally use the 12 days leading up to Christmas to work toward a more simple Christmas. Will you do the same?
I loved Christmas as a kid, but here’s the thing: my family was poor and Christmas was always simple. Until I had my own kid, I tended to keep it that way. When Annie was real little, I’ll admit that I overdid Christmas a bit. I’ve scaled way back the last few years. This year I’m going to continue that trend toward a more simple Christmas.
The 12 Days Of Christmas
Day One: Make a list of ways you can simplify the holiday season. When we write things down, we’re more likely to follow through. Include how to decorate simply, how to keep gift-giving simple, and how to cut back on food this year.
Day Two: Decorate your home in a very simple style. I like a few simple decorations, but I’ve learned to keep it real simple. I’ve let go of about 75% of my decor over the past few years. Now I have one small tote of decorations. When you get out your decorations, be willing to let go of the excess and keep it simple this year.
Day Three: Set a limited schedule for shopping. Most of my shopping is already done by now. But what I have done is simple. Only a few gifts for Annie, and a single gift for a handful of others. Consider people’s needs before buying gifts. Make a plan that allows you to get everything in one simple shopping trip.
Put Togetherness Before Consumerism
Day Four: Get active with your family. Make sure to get out and enjoy the outdoors. Winter is a wonderful time to get out and play together. It’s exhilarating and you’ll create memories that will last a lifetime.
Day Five: Make something for a loved one. Homemade gifts have much more meaning than something bought from a store. Even if it’s just a simple homemade card, your loved one will cherish it.
Day Six: Make something together. Spend some time with your kids to make something for the holiday season. Make a simple decoration. Make something that you can use all year long. Again, this will become a great memory.
Make This Christmas A Healthy One
Day Seven: Plan your Christmas meal together. Don’t just do the same old thing and buy a turkey or a ham with all the trimmings. Consider a smaller and more healthy Christmas dinner.
Day Eight: Have hot cocoa together. There’s something about having a cup of hot cocoa that warms the heart. After you go sledding or take a brisk winter walk, make some cocoa and enjoy it with your family. But don’t eat a bunch of sweets with your cocoa. Keep it simple and healthy.
Day Nine: Get some rest. People get stressed out during the holiday season. Why? Because they’re running around trying to prepare for a big celebration. Instead of making Christmas big, make it a simple Christmas and take time to rest and relax with your loved ones.
Make A Point To Help Others
Day Ten: Instead of spending your time decorating, shopping, and eating out, consider helping those in need. You could volunteer at a homeless shelter or a soup kitchen. After all, Christmas is a time for giving. That doesn’t have to include buying.
Day Eleven: Spread the joy through music. One of my favorite parts of Christmas as a kid, was learning and singing Christmas songs. Spend time singing with your family. You might even choose to go out caroling.
Day Twelve: Focus on the real reason for the holiday. Remember, we celebrate Christmas to celebrate the birth of Jesus. You don’t have to be a Christian to celebrate someone’s birthday. But if you are, you know what Christmas is really about.
Make This Christmas A Simple Christmas
The point of this post is simple: Don’t overdo the holidays. Make a point to spend more time with your loved ones and less time caught up in the rush. I think you’ll find that Christmas can be a calm and relaxing time of year.
As a gift to you, I’d like to offer you a free ebook. The Happiness Of Simple helps you learn to focus on simplicity. You’ll find more peace. You’ll discover that you have more time for the things that are really important.