by Joan Law
Feng Shui Joan’s Way
Have you met anyone who has not wanted a less-stressful holiday season? Me either! Having a stress-free holiday in 2020 just about seems impossible! But we want you to enjoy the peace and beauty of this holiday season. Our hope is that a little advice from Feng Shui Joan’s Way will help!
Here is a short list of ways to de-stress your holiday and reduce clutter — both physical and mental!
Top Tip: Make your gift requests known
“Creating gift lists and providing them to family members well in advance of holidays and celebrations can be a very helpful tool in limiting the clutter collection.”
1. Cruise through the holidays. Ever heard of the The Fly Lady? Well now you have! This Southern belle developed a plan called “Cruising Through the Holidays.” The premise? Pretend you are leaving on a cruise and that you must have everything ready for the holidays by then. This approach works wonders for allowing yourself to enjoy (virtual) holiday parties and family time without the worry.
2. Reduce clutter before the holidays begin. Start now to move out old clothes, toys, games, books, movies and more. Feng Shui Joan’s Way clutter clearing service can help! Once you are ready to move items out, contact the Vietnam Veterans Association to schedule a pickup.
3. Shop Consumables. Most people really don’t want to have it all. Clutter-free, consumable gifts are perfect for this circumstance. And something sweet is always a winner. I have found The Cannoli Pie Company in Bridgeport, CT is a great resource. They deliver their famous one-of-a-kind pies all over the country. Or how about gift cards for a local tea shop that knows all about how to deliver calm to your life. One of my favorite places to relax is Open Door Tea in Stratford. These gifts will be appreciated for their personal touch. Every community has local favorites – go find yours.
4. Share the Season – Shop Local – Shop Small! There are a host of small businesses that need local patrons now more than ever. Give gifts that deliver positive energy, inspiration, and support for your communities. Here are just a few links to help you deliver smiles: Shop Small Stratford; Music Together (virtual music classes for children); City Line Florist (flowers, plants, and gift baskets); Wag Central (for our pets).
5. Get charitable. From goats to jewelry and shoes, nothing says “I love you” like a charitable gift. Toms Company not only sells great shoes but donates a pair of shoes directly to people in need. Buy a Llama for a family through Heifer International, or Support a Refugee through Oxfam. Make an important donation in the name of your friend or loved one: Sterling House Community Center; Homes for the Brave; Bridgeport Rescue Mission and so many more!
6. Give the gift of a “Gift Exemption.” Instead plan for a virtual holiday get together. I’m thinking – pull out your ugly holiday sweater – wear it for the party.
7. Exchange services or good deeds. Everyone has skills that others only WISH they had. Sewing, canning, computer skills, handywoman, cooking, an eye for landscaping. Consider YOUR skill and how you can share it with friends and family.
8. Be Giver-Focused. Want to be surprised? Recent psychological studies on gift-giving have found that gifts that are giver-focused — a gift that allows you to share who you are, like a favorite product or book — generates an extremely positive response. Giver-focused gifts bring people closer in meaningful ways. Find gifts that let you share something of yourself with your gift recipient.
9. Reduce and reuse gift wrap. Nothing fills the landfills every holiday like wrapping paper. Are you crafty? Sew your own easy draw string bags, which can be gifted or re-used annually. Or invest in re-usable paper gift bags. I would love to read about and share your ideas. Feel free to Email me your holiday stress-busters.
Wishing you all the best this Holiday Season!