I’d like to challenge you to think differently about sustainability and the upcoming holiday season.
Just look around – everywhere around us – the music, the decoration, themed accessories, gifts; are all reminders of the approaching holiday season. The stores are full of ‘things’ and we are up to our eyeballs in consumerism.
This year, I challenge you to think differently about the holiday season. Consider the following points:
1. Do we really need more things? Our consumerism has a huge environmental impact on the planet. Please don’t buy ‘landfill’. Do we really need an ice cube tray that makes Christmas tree shaped cubes? Look at all the stuff they sell that is only relevant for 1 day a year. Do we need any of this gimmicky stuff? Aren’t we always fighting to declutter and simplify our lives? I’m worried about our planet and the impact of the season. Let’s think differently. When buying for others consider gift cards so recipients can choose something they really want or need.
2. Don’t go into debt trying to show people how much you love them. Your friends and family love you too and would not want you to be personally and financially impacted.
3. Please consider giving the gift of an experience or gesture instead of “things”. Perhaps you could make a charitable donation like ‘buying a goat’ for someone in a developing country in your recipient’s name. Bake and gift your secret-recipe, award-winning best chicken pot pie. Enjoy a special bottle of wine and reminisce about your great times together. Offer your services, like car repair or dog-sitting, in the form of home-made, redeemable ‘coupons’. Volunteer at a shelter. Offer something personal– a drawing, a heartfelt letter, a gift-wrapped memento from your past together. Do something they remember and appreciate, not something that will end up in landfill within 5 years. At the end of the day it’s not what you receive, it’s what you remember. So, my challenge to you is to do something that truly makes a difference this holiday season. You won’t just be giving a gift, you’ll be creating a happy memory your loved ones can cherish for the rest of their lives.
I’d love to hear your ideas about meaningful holiday gift-giving! Please use the hashtag #experiencetheholidays in your social media posts and exchange your suggestions for meaningful gift ideas. Thank you.