We’ve officially entered the season of holiday marketing.
Your inbox is filling with “must-buys” and “great deals” and you may have started your Christmas shopping list.
It’s aggressive, bombarding and an assault on the senses.
Which brings me to my simple wellness tip for this week: don’t buy into the hype.
Don’t spend your money on things no one needs.
Don’t add to the carbon footprint by investing in plastics and toxins and toys that will end up in a landfill in a few short months.
Don’t waste time in stores or online shopping when you could be making the most of this glorious time of year — celebrating with family, cooking fine food, and enjoying the weather before being plunged into the depths of summer or winter.
Don’t, don’t, DON’T put short term gifts onto a credit card that will trap you with long-term debt.
Don’t try to buy happiness or self-love through material objects, because it doesn’t work.
When we spend money on things we don’t need we are trying to fill a void…an emptiness…a sense of boredom…a loss of purpose…a lack of self-worth.
But ignoring a problem doesn’t mean it will go away. Ignoring a problem won’t stop it from wearing us down in body, mind, and spirit.
I call this behavior “sabotaging self-soothing”. In the short term it soothes by temporarily distracting you from truths that you don’t want to face, but in the long term, it can sabotage your health, happiness and your ability to make progress.
Emotional eating is sabotaging self-soothing behavior.
Choosing bad relationships is sabotaging self-soothing behavior.
Excessive shopping is sabotaging self-soothing behavior.
And by “excessive” I mean buying things that you don’t need.
A woman who is rich in self-love will not feel the need to spend unnecessarily at this time of year. She knows that joy comes from within, via good relationships, values, and time well-spent.
So here are four simple ideas for how to spend with health, happiness, and self-love this year:
If you have small children they’re going to get a kick out of unwrapping presents. The goal, then, is to be thoughtful and teach gratitude.
It boggles my mind in our internet age how many kids have lost the appreciation of receiving. With the touch of a thumb, anything anyone could ever want can be delivered to your doorstep. It’s not something we all grew up with and we’re not yet sure how this new technology will impact their ability and desire to earn, spend wisely, save, etc.
Instead, ask them the ONE thing they want and just buy that. They’ll learn, as I did as a wee one, to be so thankful for the special gift that they wanted the most.
If you have money to spare, invest in shares on their behalf or contribute to their 529. It might not make you the coolest mother, aunt or grandmother at the time, but just wait until they turn 18 and that $50 contribution becomes the down payment on their new house.
As we get older, many of us don’t care for presents. With cupboards already at capacity, the last thing we need is more objects to store.
Instead, have everyone contribute to the holiday meal or split the cost of an extended family or friend weekend getaway and share a memorable experience.
Gift To Those In Need:
Spend your money or time helping others who could use a hand.
If you’re handy with a pair of knitting needles you can make blankets and toys to give to children’s hospitals and family shelters. You can fill bags for food drives, volunteer, or think of someone who might feel lonely at this time of year and invite them into your fold.
I think we can all get caught up in the material stuff and forget what the holidays are about — giving thanks and serving others.
Gift Yourself Knowledge:
Instead of buying things, buy thoughts, support and knowledge.
Get that personal trainer, sign up for a community college class, buy the Rosetta Stone tapes, or join online courses that teach you what you need to know to make your next year your best year.
If wellness and self-love are on your radar, then my program, Slim Down With Self Love, could be a good fit. Join the waitlist here: https://jenniferdene.lpages.co/waitlist-slim-down-with-self-love/
Your health hinges on much more than what you eat or how you exercise. It’s your thoughts, intentions, actions, beliefs, relationships, and values, all of which can be tried and tested at this time of year. But with awareness and simple decision making, you will navigate the silly season with aplomb.
Let me know your thoughts by leaving a comment below.