Ask yourself, ‘what do I really enjoy doing?’, ‘what are the hobbies or skills I love to make use of?’  At Christmas time we often forget to take the easy option of using what we know and love, for us it’s natural or nothing really to boast about, but for others it’s a wonderful gift.

How many of you enjoy cooking, doing DIY, gardening, being creative or doing something sporty?  What could you cook, fix, advise, make or coach someone as a Christmas gift this year?  To you, that home made Christmas pudding was enjoyable and easy to make, but to someone else it is a delicious masterpiece and something to savour with every mouthful.  To you, playing football is an enjoyable hobby, but to a younger relation the chance of learning new skills and techniques is a wonderful shared opportunity.

Why not make Christmas easier and share something that you enjoy doing or making as a gift.

You’ve probably thought about how much you want to spend this Christmas, worked out the budget for each relative, friend and neighbour.  The costs we often forget about are the ‘extras’ that we treat ourselves to that make us feel all  Christmassy – new Christmas jumper, tub of Quality Street, extra booze (just in case anyone pops in), and don’t forget the mince pies.  They all add up.

One study found that the average UK person spends £602 on Christmas gifts alone, up by 40% from last year.  For many people this amount will seem staggering, yet we can easily fall into the habit trap of doing what we’ve always done, even if this year we can’t afford it.  As Martin Lewis reminds us “don’t plan the perfect Christmas – first work out what you can afford”.  When 8 out of 10 out us are worried about the rising cost of living, can you afford the risk of stress, loss of sleep, financial debt for these few days of celebration?

This year, consider not only what you can financially afford, but also what emotionally you can afford to.

What are your fondest memories of Christmas as a child?’ What to you is the key to making a perfect Christmas – and go beyond tree decorations and a well-cooked dinner?’  For many of us the essence of Christmas is enjoying each other’s company, sharing quality time, family ‘in-jokes’, in other words the simple things about Christmas.

Take some time to sit and compose a list of all the simple enjoyments and pleasures this time offers you.  If you know what Christmas really means to you then you’ll be able to actively create your perfect Christmas.

If Christmas is about giving and receiving, what does the receiver really get from you, ask yourself ‘what does this gift really say about me?’  We can get caught up buying gifts that are a statement about price, a label, or the latest trend, but what does it say about you?  ‘How does this gift reflect you as a person?’ What does this present say about your personality, your beliefs or your values?’ 

If Christmas is about giving and receiving, how would it be to give someone a gift that really captures your essence, a gift from your heart?  When you give something that reflects you, how can the receiver not love it!

From us all here at Kapow Coaching – wishing you lots of festive fun!