This holiday season, I’m giving you the gift of some minimalist Christmas shopping advice!
If you’re just starting out on your minimalism journey as a beginner and are looking for some ideas on how to keep your Christmas minimalist, you’re in the right place. I’m going to take you through a quick rundown of the things I do and don’t do during the Christmas period.
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If you already consider yourself to be a minimalist person yourself, or have been reading up on minimalism for quite some time now, you’ll still enjoy these tips and might find one or two that will help you to embrace minimalism even more.
I hope that this list will help many of us not only to get through the busiest season effortlessly but also to experience it in a more meaningful way.
So grab yourself a hot chocolate or cocoa, sit back, relax and enjoy these suggestions as they may just be what saves your sanity this holiday season!
Minimalist Christmas shopping: 10 Dos & Don’ts
- 1. Don't get into debt
- 2. Don't Give Modernist Junk
- 3. Do give experiences if physical gifts aren't needed or wanted
- 4. Do shop sustainably
- 5. Do shop locally and small businesses
- 6. Do give the gift of time
- 7. Don't buy anything that's not on your list
- 8. Do buy gifts that can be shared
- 9. Do buy gifts that are functional for the person receiving them
- 10. Do give back
1. Don’t get into debt
You know it and I know it. But the majority of us have been there before. Spending more than you can afford at Christmas time is not only bad for your pocket, it’s also bad for your mental and physical well-being and could leave you with a feeling of emptiness and regret.
To ensure you don’t get into debt, set a budget in advance. Identify how much you can afford to spend without getting into debt, then write a list of those you want to buy a gift for, and the amount you want to spend on each person.
The key for not getting into debt is sticking to your budget no matter what.
You don’t need to spend hundreds on the “perfect gift” to make someone smile. The key to finding a great gift is to really think about the person you’re buying for. If you can’t find anything that’s suitable or think that this person already has everything they need or want, go in a different gift direction, such as an offer to help them with something, an experience gift or even an IOU for the next time they decide they want or need something!
2. Don’t Give Modernist Junk
How often have you received a gift that you didn’t need or even want? We all have things in our home that we don’t even remember how it got there, who gave it to us, etc.
Sometimes the practice of gift-giving ends up so stressful for people that they just buy something for the sake of buying. Waste is a big part of the modern life, and that should definitely not be reflected in our Christmas gifts.
Still, when shopping for gifts this Christmas, don’t buy into the illusion that you need to give things in order to be remembered or cared about. Instead, focus on giving experiences and memories by doing something together, offering help with something they would like to achieve or become better at, etc.
3. Do give experiences if physical gifts aren’t needed or wanted
Physical gifts have their place in a minimalist home, but it’s generally not during the holiday season unless you already know that you need or want something. In my opinion, experiences are much better for any budding minimalist.
I’ve always preferred experiences over gifts. I’ve even converted some of my family and friends into opting for experience gifts this year!
Experience gifts are great for many reasons:
- They don’t require storage space
- They don’t become outdated
- They create lasting memories
- Both of you can experience something together rather than it being a one-sided gift.
- While you don’t always get the instant gratification of an experience gift, it does leave something to look forward to in the future.
If you’re planning on giving someone a gift this year, but aren’t sure what to give them, go for an experience instead of an item that will just take up physical space in their home. If you need some inspiration on what experience gifts are great for Christmas, check out the following post: The Best Experience Gifts For The Whole Family
4. Do shop sustainably
One way to diminish waste on a bigger scale is by shopping sustainably. You can either go to a store that specialises in sustainably made products, or you could even go online.
It is important to note that not all eco-friendly brands are created equal, but by buying from them instead of more generic brands you’re definitely doing your part. For example, there’s still a lot of room for improvement when it comes to sustainable fashion, but the industry is definitely on the right path.
Along with fueling a more sustainable fashion industry, buying from ethical brands also reduces exploitation. When you buy sweatshop-free clothing and other items, you’re taking a stand against worker exploitation. While it might be impossible to avoid all unethical practices this Christmas season, you can certainly do your part to avoid fueling them with your hard-earned cash.
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5. Do shop locally and small businesses
Even if you’re shopping sustainably, there’s always a fair chance that some of your gifts are coming from abroad.
It’s important to support local and small businesses, whether it’s a craftsperson, shop owner, or farmer from your own area. By shopping locally and from small businesses, you’re keeping money in your local economy and also allowing people to stay employed.
Shopping locally also gives you a chance to see how your money is affecting the community around you, and when the item you’re buying has been handmade by someone in your area, it helps to support their livelihood.
6. Do give the gift of time
Shopping for gifts this holiday season doesn’t just involve physical items, but can also take place in other ways. For example, you might give the gift of cooking a meal or baking cookies, giving someone a ride to their destination, or offering your services as a babysitter.
You can also take the time to do something personal for someone, such as decorating their house or fixing that annoying squeak in their car.
Sometimes it’s the little things that really show someone how much you care.
7. Don’t buy anything that’s not on your list
Remember we spoke about budgeting earlier? Well, this goes hand in hand with budgeting. Having an idea of what you’re going to get ahead of time not only ensures you don’t forget anyone, but it also helps with budgeting.
When you write a list of who you need to buy for, write an idea of what you’d like to gift them. Then stick to that list. Don’t get caught up in the whole shopping experience and get tempted to buy extra things for people.
By staying away from impulse purchases and focusing on shopping only for things that are actually needed or wanted, the holidays will be a much more joyous experience for you and those around you.
8. Do buy gifts that can be shared
If you have a lot of nieces and nephews you’d like to share a gift with, why not opt for a game they can all play together and share? This way you get to gift multiple children with just one item.
It also helps build a stronger connection between family members and encourages them to play together and bond while doing so. This creates wonderful memories for all involved.
9. Do buy gifts that are functional for the person receiving them
While you don’t have to spend a lot of money or go out of your way, it’s important to think about what the gifted person will actually use and appreciate.
For example, if it’s someone who enjoys cooking, you might want to buy them an item that they can use in the kitchen.
Functional gifts are also something that someone might not buy themselves, but can really appreciate. It shows them that you’ve been listening and paying attention to their needs.
Read also: 9 Simple Rules For Regifting Christmas Gifts
10. Do give back
If you’ve done some good shopping and have some money left over, consider donating to a local charity. Your gift of giving back will not only reward you with a sense of goodwill, but it will also provide those in your community who are less fortunate with some much-needed assistance.
Alternatively, buy some small gifts that you can donate to the local children’s hospital for the kids who will be there over the Christmas period.
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I hope you have found this guide to minimalist Christmas shopping helpful. Keep these dos and don’ts in mind as you shop for your loved ones or yourself this holiday season! Remember that the best gifts are those that come from the heart, not material items.
By following the dos and don’ts of minimalist Christmas shopping , you’ll be able to enjoy the holiday season in a way that is true to your values. You can still spread the joy of the holidays, without succumbing to consumerism and overspending on unnecessary gifts.
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