Christmas is a such a special time of year but it also comes with stress, materialism and a feeling of overwhelm with everything that has to be done. Somehow we tend to over-complicate stuff that doesn’t need to be difficult. That often takes away from the joy of Christmas. Instead it’s entirely possible to have a more simple and minimal Christmas.
This year we’re hosting Christmas for the first time ever and I’m determined to keep it simple but special. I don’t want the day or the days leading up to it to be stressful in any way. Instead I want to enjoy hosting it and that’s why I’ve decided to keep things minimal and pared back. So if you’re thinking about a more minimal Christmas too, then these ideas might help.
How to have a minimal Christmas (that’s mostly stress-free)
commit only to what you want to do
Christmas brings parties, activities and lots of potential outings. While it can be tempting to commit to everything, is that what you really want? Looking at a calendar where every weekend in December is booked up can bring unnecessary stress. Instead choose a few outings that you and your family really want to do and go for those. That’s exactly what I’m doing this year – nothing more than what I actually want to do rather than saying yes to everything and regretting it later.
keep your gifts simple (but thoughtful)
So many of us end up buying Christmas gifts because we feel we should and so often these gifts end up being clutter. I receive gifts that I definitely don’t need or want but then I feel too guilty to give it away, so it just becomes clutter in my home. And it feels so wasteful too. Nobody wants that.
This year, I’m focusing on simple and thoughtful gifts like experiences, books, gift cards & food gifts which are all usually something people want. Also I’ve agreed with family and close friends that the adults won’t exchange gifts, we’ll only give gifts to the kids. Instead we’re going to treat ourselves to a nice meal somewhere – this isn’t stressful for anyone and experiences make memories while gifts don’t. But if you do have lots of gifts to buy, make your Christmas shopping easier by blocking out an afternoon and getting it all done in one ago – if you do it online, it’s totally possible. I’ve tried this and it makes things so much more manageable.
keep decorations minimal
I always opt for simplicity when decorating for Christmas because it looks better and doesn’t become a chore. Things like some green foliage, candles and fairy lights are pretty much all you need. If you love a Christmas tree then go for it but once again keep the tree decorations minimalist. A Christmas tree can look so magical with just some fairly lights on it. You can also opt for a small tree which is what I’m doing in order to make the decorating even simpler.
pick a colour scheme
Pick a Christmas colour scheme in neutrals and natural tones. This is an easy way to make your Christmas decor look minimalist and cohesive. Your colour scheme can be as simple as white and green or you can add another neutral colour or two. And this will also help if you’re buying decorations – you won’t be tempted to impulse buy stuff that doesn’t fit in your colour scheme. When I pick a colour scheme I usually extend it to my table decor and gift wrapping so it makes things even easier and involves fewer decisions.
keep entertaining stress-free
Whether you’re hosting Christmas day or having a few get togethers over the Xmas period, entertain in a way that you’re comfortable with. So if you love making food from scratch, go ahead. But if that’s just not your thing, then do whatever causes you the least stress. The idea of get togethers is to spend time with the people that matter, it’s not about slaving away in the kitchen. When I entertain over the Christmas period, sometimes I opt for something as simple as a large charcuterie board where everything is shop bought and can be laid out in minutes. And I often keep my table decor very minimal – a tablecloth, some candles, some greenery in a vase and thats it.
take some time to slow down
What do you really love to do at Christmas time? I love getting cosy on the sofa and watching a festive film with my family while eating popcorn of course. I also enjoy having a bit of slow time reading a book by the fire and drinking some wine. I love having days where there are no plans whatsoever and we can all lounge about in our PJ’s all day. Whether you like baking, watching netflix or simply relaxing, take some time out to slow down and do it.