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The holidays are a time for peace, joy, and family. It’s also the season where we show the ones we love how much we love them by showering them with gifts. It’s a tradition as old as time, and it has pure, well-meaning intentions. However, the powers-that-be have turned simple gift-giving into a multi-billion-dollar industry. An industry we so willingly participate in each year, without so much as a consideration for the effects on our environment, mental health, and bank accounts.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve purchased the latest thing-a-mah-jig for my boys, only to have them discard it after a few weeks. My intentions were there, but my mindfulness certainly was not.

The concept of buying vs. being is something I’ve recently come across, and it has shed light on how I’ve participated in mindless consumerism over the years, especially during the holidays. Is all this stuff really worth it in the grand scheme of things? Is it worth the debt and the stress that has on our mental health? Is it worth the toll that mass production takes on our environment? Hell, no.

What is the true reason of the season? We buy for others because we are yearning for that close connection. We deeply desire being a part of a family unit, a community. We’ve learned that this is achieved through gift-giving (which is so generous of us), but is it possible we could try something different this year?

I think so.

Buy gifts, but be mindful about it

Now, buying gifts isn’t evil. I’m simply saying we should be intentional about what we buy and investigate why we buy it. Incorporating mindfulness is key to determining whether we are purchasing for an emotional need, or if we’re Christmas Holidays Giftspurchasing for a concrete reason.

If we are considering buying a gift for someone else, we should ask ourselves if it’s meaningful, or if it’s something that simply checks off the box. If we are considering buying a gift for ourselves, we should ask whether it’s beneficial to our lives, or if it’s something we’re purchasing due to an emotional want or need. Is there a deeper desire we are ignoring? What pain might we be trying to avoid?

The key is to allow the truth to come out with the answers. Let mindfulness bring you to your truth. Don’t be afraid to sit with the emotions that come up. It’s okay to feel them… even if they’re ugly. Been there, girlfriend.

Think outside of the gift box

What would happen if we shifted our focus from buying tons of gifts to making beautiful memories with our loved ones? What would our schedules look like? My guess is we’d spend less time shopping and wrapping gifts and more one-on-one time with our loved ones. We’d definitely have less items to dust. Sounds like a win to me!

Think about offering your family an experience to remember for years to come. What are some things you can do with them this holiday season that you’ve never done before? Christmas caroling? Snow tubing? Actually finishing that damn puzzle you never started? The options are endless!

I’m happy to tell you I can help with this. What fun would it be to participate in a mandala workshop with your whole family (virtually, of course)? I can cater the workshop to your specific needs. Maybe you’d like to create mandala ornaments for the family tree, or maybe you’d like to have a mandala competition among the kids–whoever creates the best one gets to eat one of Santa’s cookies!

Another idea is to have a henna party. Those are so fun, and it encourages so much creativity. A friendly henna competition doesn’t hurt, either!

Focus on simply being, with my help

I’m more than happy to help you transition from overbuying to simply being. I have tons of ideas that will create new traditions for your family over the holidays and even more ideas on how to incorporate more mindfulness into your life. Interested? I thought you’d never ask! Let’s chat today. And remember, less is more this holiday season.

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