As a person extremely concerned with the environment and as a person who is trying to live a minimal life I truly struggle with Christmas decorations. As a child, my Mother had 3 big boxes of Christmas decor. We pulled it out on Thanksgiving Day and the packed it up on New Year's Day. This comes up to being about a month (take or give a few days). One of my goals in achieving a minimalist life is to only own things I use at least once every 30 days. So Christmas decorations obviously break this rule. At the same time, I love Christmas. I love the feeling in the air, I love the decorations and the lights, I love it all. It is truly my favorite time of the year.
This caused a conflict within me. I did not want to give up the holiday, but at the same time, I did not want to have boxes upon boxes of items that I only use for 1 month out of the year. It seems like a waste to me to have all of these items gathering dust and taking up usable space for 11 months out of the year.
There were a few things that sealed the deal for me in this situation. I do not host any Christmas festivities at my home, so technically there is no need for me to have all of the decorations. I get to visit other family members home and still get to enjoy all of the Christmas decorations there. I do not have any children, so I have no need to create a Christmas environment in my home. After going back and forth with myself for a few days I finally had a decision. I was not going to decorate for Christmas until I had a reason to.
So now, I need to get rid of the items I already have. Last year, I had a roommate who was really into Christmas and I let myself get into the Christmas spirit with her. In the process, we ended up with a lot of Christmas items. I now have a few boxes I need to get rid of.
I decided that I would give all of the Christmas items I own to a family own need. It was important to me that these items brought joy to someone else. In a way, this also brought joy to me. My goal is to make the Christmas season about bringing joy to other people instead of bringing joy to myself.
My Tips For You
If you have children, I really think you should decorate you home for them. My suggestion would be to try to keep it as minimal as possible. You can achieve this by doping things like getting a smaller tree, only have enough ornaments to cover the tree. Instead of buying tons of other decorations, decorate your walls with Christmas cards, family photos, and drawings. I also think it is important to take your children to volunteer at some point during the Christmas season. Make sure they know that Christmas is not about the gifts they receive but that it is about filling the world with love and joy.
If you do NOT have children, instead of spending a bunch of time, energy and money on decorating your home for the holidays spend it on someone else. You could go to an Angel tree or two and give a Christmas to children who would not otherwise have one. Volunteer with local organizations in your area. A lot of churches will do something for the homeless around the holidays, you could even volunteer at a soup kitchen. The whole idea is to bring joy to others life.
What types of things do you like to do during the holiday seasons? Are you going to try any of these ideas? Did you try any of these ideas? Let me know in the comments!