It’s the most wonderful time of the year.
Christmas is the season of glitz and glamour, of pressies and Harry Potter movies. Twinkle lights, gaudy trees, too many mince pies and questionable reindeer jumpers – what is it about this time of year that makes us giddy with excess?
Maybe it’s the shift to the Southern Hemisphere, or maybe I’m just growing up… For whatever reason, Christmas has begun to shift speed for me in recent years.
What used to be a cosy and potato-stuffed affair has turned into sunglasses and beachy hair.
In Ireland, where Christmas lights up a dull December, I found it easy to welcome all the glitter and sparkles of the holidays. In New Zealand however (and I will also be travelling to Australia for the main event) Christmas seems poorly timed and oddly out of season. Christmas trees, snowflakes, even Santa in his sweltering red suit: they don’t seem to have a place down here the same as they did in the cold and grey.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m still SO EXCITED about Christmas!!
It’s just shifted pace, is all. Shifted meaning, even.
These days I’m all about a slow Christmas.
No Facebook, no Instagram.
No frantic last-minute dashes to the supermarket for frozen peas or whipping cream.
No shiny Christmas wrapping paper (I’m going the zero-waste route instead).
My big plan this Christmas is to do as little as possible. To not strive, not force. I’m letting it all unfold as it wants to – it would have done anyway, with or without my fretting.
I have a very strong sense that this Christmas is all about being as present and mindful as possible – especially with my family and loved ones. I’m taking it slow, slow, slow. One thing at a time.
Actually, I’m really looking forward to Christmas being chill and laid-back. It’s pretty impossible for it to be any other way in 35 degree heat! You’ll find me either in the pool (floating on a donut-shaped lilo) or in the kitchen with a G&T, laughing my head off with my favourite girls in the world – my baby sisters.
Here’s how you can have a slower Christmas, too.
Be grateful (and show your appreciation)
Can we all just remember what Christmas is all about? Yes, it has kind of carried us all away into a lustful consumeristic rampage, but it’s usually in the name of showing the people we love that we care about them. There are so many more ways to do this beside giving gifts (I’m not saying you should forego the gifts, though. Everyone loves pressies).
What I’m trying to say is, don’t lose sight of the spirit of the season. Bring someone a cup of tea and have a natter. It’s the little things – and life is so short. Cherish every damn moment.
Switch off your phone
I’m so over mobile phones. I’m just done. The constant demand for your attention, the mindless scrolling, the glazed eyes as you get sucked into your screen… Some days I feel like throwing mine straight into the ocean. Except, then I’d have to go fish it out and then go recycle it responsibly instead. It’s the gesture, though. I hate that I feel like I need it and I’m making it my mission in 2018 to use less of it.
Something about the grandness of nature is soothing. We can get lost in the beauty of a perfect cloud, or the exact shade of light hitting the ocean. There is so much to notice, so much to be grateful for, so much to appreciate. It puts us in perspective, all our squabbles and fears and desires.
Breathe in the outside air and let it work its magic. Be open to the magic all around you and keep your eyes peeled for tiny miracles. The more you notice, the more you will be filled with wonder.
Have you subscribed to my YouTube channel community? I’d love to have you join me over there! Here’s a recent video filled with more tips for a slow and stress-free Christmas.
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