Counting the Christmas cards
I haven’t bought any Christmas cards in over 3 years, so you might wonder why I have so many? Before I learnt to declutter I never knew what I had. I had stuff scattered all over the house. In the kitchen junk drawer, in with stationery, in a cupboard, in the airing cupboard and some with the Christmas tree in the loft. As I never knew what I had, when I went out Christmas shopping I always bought more, worried that I would run out. The same with sellotape too! I also used to send over 250 Christmas cards out each year.
When I decluttered and got everything together I soon realised I had more than enough cards to last me for years! I think I counted 6 rolls of sellotape (all half used) and hundreds of Christmas cards. I am still working my way through them. Its taking me longer to get through them than it used to because I also decided 3 years ago to declutter Christmas habits that I had got myself into. I now firmly believe that if something doesn’t spark joy I no-longer do it. That means the hours I used to spend getting writer’s cramp sending cards to colleagues I worked with twenty years ago, and friends that our only interaction was a yearly card (with no message) no longer happen. I now send a yearly update to those friendships I cherish that I don’t see but do want to keep in touch with. The time I used to spend writing endless cards I can now spend writing heartfelt letters rather than just signing my name. I no longer feel obligated to send Christmas cards to people I see every day/week. They can get my sincere Merry Christmas wishes face to face with a hug instead. They all understand why and are fine with it! No one I care about feels that I care any less for them by not sending them a card. Most of my family are on Facebook and know all about my life and how much I care for them so they don’t need another card at Christmas to remind them of that. I still buy well thought out presents to immediate family and friends, and the work secret Santa is a chance to join in festive fun without breaking the bank.
One tip for Christmas organisation it to buy a Christmas tree bag, it’s made out of tough groundsheet type material for keeping all your tree and its decorations safe. I would also invest in a wrapping paper roll bag and keep Christmas cards, scissors, sellotape and cards in there too. Put this inside the Christmas tree bag. Keep seasonal things together so you know exactly what you have and where it is. The bags will make sure that even if these items are kept in the loft/shed/understairs they don’t get damp or dusty and stay protected.
So before you feel obligated to do Christmas traditions – ask yourself are you doing it for the sake of it and does it spark joy? May your Christmas be filled with joy, not chores!