How I’m Doing The Holidays Differently This Year

In a year filled with a lot of change, it’s only fitting that my approach to celebrating the holidays has shifted as well. I have — and always will — love an excuse to whip out a cheesy Hallmark movie or scheme a cute wrapping strategy. But lately, i’ve noticed my motivation in maintaining annual traditions hasn’t been all there. While it’s likely the effect of being in a new city and climate, with a new group of people to share these experiences with, i’ve come to realize that it’s simply the season of life that i’m in and it’s giving me new perspective on what I value most this time of year.

So, without further ado, here’s how i’m approaching the holidays differently this season:

+ Less Shopping, More Snail Mail: I used to be the gal at the mall at midnight on Black Friday hunting down a good deal. As fun as it was, there was so much stress involved in the shopping. So this season, I took a hiatus from the store chaos and bought smaller, simpler gifts online. I also scooped up a few festive stationary sets and have since spent a few minutes each night writing cards to people back home. It’s the best way to unwind before bed and I know the gesture extends further than anything I could’ve rushed to a retailer for.

+ Taking Advantage of The City: This is my first holiday season without cold weather and snow. As great as it is to stroll past palm trees in a light jacket, it certainly doesn’t make things feel Christmas-y! Therefore, i’ve been changing that mindset by partaking in all the touristy type activities the city has to offer {that I ordinarily would avoid.} Think: ice skating downtown in Union Square, admiring the window displays at Macy’s, sipping a hot holiday drink outdoors, and visiting Brit + Co’s Holiday House. Sure, there may be big crowds involved, but the change in mood is totally worth the extra waits and wandering.

+ Setting New Traditions: My stash of Christmas decor didn’t make the cut during my move. So, instead of splurging on all new things and decking out my place like I do every year, I decided to invest in other ways. Like hosting a cookie night complete with wine and apps for a few friends, doing a holiday dinner with roommates, and signing up for a BlueApron series with my boyfriend. All of these things allow me to spend time with people, and that makes me happier than any cute garland or tree could.

+ Keeping My Schedule Free: This is the first December in awhile where I don’t feel like i’m running from point A to B every day of the week! I’ve learned the power of saying “no” this year, and i’ve put that to good use. Instead, i’ve prioritized the big parties and cleared my schedule for time to refuel at home with good movies, calls home, and time with roommates. After all, ’tis the season for joy, and sometimes that starts with making yourself happy first.

Wishing you a wonderful season filled with new and old traditions — regardless of what those may be!

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