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Christmas Part 2: Declutter your Christmas Rituals

Christmas-making is an art form that anyone can get good at. In fact, by the time you've left home, it's unlikely that Santa will be coming down the chimney as he used to, and unless you get busy you might have quite a depressing festive season. Yes, we approach this time with a certain amount of anxiety. But actually, much is in our hands. The different Christmas 'types' What kind of Christmas-maker are you? person of a religious grouping Christian,…

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Christmas Part 1: Organise your Christmas Shopping

Many people approach the Christmas season with dread. An expensive, stressful time, it brings unreasonable expectations and challenges our sense of wellbeing. I had an interesting chat with a handful of other professional organisers from the Association Professional Declutterers and Organisers last week, about our 'readiness' for Christmas. Here are some top tips from the professionals about how to survive the season: What they said Ignore the traditional Christmas shopping timetable Only buy things you think your friends will actually…

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A needless, consumerist chore

"Holiday gift-giving between adults is a needless, consumerist chore." (The Minimalists, here) In part I agree, and in part I disagree. Firstly, there should be no one-size-fits-all approach to Christmas. I believe it is essential to tap into your own ideas about what you celebrate and how. Gift-giving can take place in any number of ways. Is it needless? I enjoy Christmas as an opportunity to recapture some of my childish pleasure in pretty lights, music, and, I'll admit it,…

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Hard Candy Christmas

I'm referring to the version by the marvellous Tracey Thorn. Naturally when you're trying to escape "Jingle Bells", it pays (in terms of quality of life) to listen to the more unusual stuff. And there isn't a better example than her "Hard Candy Christmas". For copyright reasons it's probably best that you imagine me singing it (which I do, with huge pleasure). Maybe I'll sleep real late Maybe I'll lose some weight Maybe I'll clear my junk Maybe I'll just…

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Black Friday weekend, decluttered

First, it has to be said - you already know it's madness. Stuff doesn't make us happy, the rampant commercialism is horrific for our mental health, for our society and for the planet. People are still horribly lonely at Christmas and we are all haunted by the childhood expectations that were or weren't met, the love we did or didn't get, ¬†or our circumstances now compared to what we thought they would be 20 years ago. Victorian perfectionism meets Disney.…

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