Nine one-minute ideas to help you make the most of the festive season

Panicking about how much you still need to prepare for Christmas? Are are nine one-minute ideas to help you make the most of the festive season.

With mince pies, chocolate Santas and decorations in the supermarkets we’re left in no doubt that Christmas will soon be with us.

And whether you celebrate Christmas, or enjoy the festive season in a different way, one thing we can all be sure of is that this year it will be somewhat different. Even if we are not in lockdown, we are not going to be attending glitzy events or singing in the New Year at a concert or large party (sadly).

However, there is plenty you can do to make the holiday period enjoyable.  I’m a great believer in the power of micro moments and tiny interventions.

These are the small things we notice, the little shifts we can make, the seemingly tiny insights that will change our life for the better. Christmas won’t be the same this year – but it can be better!

Nine one-minute ideas to help you make the most of the festive season

So let me share some one-minute suggestions for doing things a bit differently. Some of these suggestions are pulled from my ‘Meee in a Minute’ books, each offering 60 one-minute micro-ideas and insights that can help us to shift our perception in life, family and at work.

Here are one-minute ideas to help you make the most of the festive season.

1) Focus on expand-tations not limitations

For so much of 2020 we’ve been limited to what we can do and who we can see. But, hopefully 2020 has also taught us that the things we thought were super important are not that important and the things we took for granted – friends and family – are where it’s at.

Take a minute to consider what you’ve gained in 2020. Expand into the good stuff.

2) Organise homemade Secret Santa

Instead of buying something, why not make something. It could be edible or creative. Take a minute to think of what you could make that would make someone you love smile.

Or, if that’s a bit challenging why not buy something basic and personalise it for your friend or family member? Probably best not to try this with your kids though!  

3) Begin it

As 2021 marches closer – is there something you want to do but are scared it won’t work out? Perhaps you want to get fit or change career. If ever there was a time to explore that – it’s now. Take a minute to consider what you are putting off. Take one positive step toward that today and keep going. 

4) Recycle presents

Before you buy anything, have you ever received a gift you didn’t want or use? Take a minute to check if you stuffed it in the back of the wardrobe. Would anyone you know love that gift? Or even better, donate the gift to a local charity, so someone in need can receive it. You might not love it but someone else will. 

5) Give knowledge

Instead of buying a gift why not introduce a loved one to interesting knowledge or a fun new interest. MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) are everywhere.

Take a minute to visit Future Learn or google ‘online courses’, browse the categories and sign up a friend or a family member to a new experience. Many of these courses are free. Who knows where they could lead – a new adventure? Certainly, more interesting than a new pair of socks. 

6) Give thanks

If you do get to spend time with your family this Christmas, take a minute to tell each person what you missed most about them in 2020. They do something similar during Thanksgiving in America, and it’s nice to stop and appreciate loved ones – especially after such a challenging year.

Research has shown that taking the time to consciously appreciate what we are grateful for, as little as once a week makes us happier, healthier and more satisfied with life. 

7) Slow down and smell the coffee

Joshua Bell, one of the greatest violinists in the world ran an experiment where he busked at a subway station in Washington DC. He played one of the most intricate pieces of music ever written on a violin worth $3.5 million.

During his 40-minute performance 1,097 people passed him – all rushing to get somewhere else. Only 27 people stopped to listen and he raised $32.17. What a waste.

Take a minute to consider what you are missing because you are so busy rushing somewhere or focused on something else. Slow down, most of us don’t have a choice right now anyway so embrace it and enjoy it.

8) Buy local

So many businesses are struggling this year and the future is very uncertain. It’s not uncertain for Amazon – their profits have soared. Wherever you can, choose to shop local.

Take a minute to consider what you could buy in local stores and little gift shops. Money that is spent locally stays locally and helps to keep those businesses afloat during a tough year. 

9) Start an anti-Bucket List

As we near the end of the year it might be easy to focus on New Year’s Resolutions for next year. And let’s face it, beating 2020 isn’t going to be difficult.

But instead of getting weighed down with what you might do, or should do, purge yourself of all the things you definitely won’t do, or don’t want to do. Liberate yourself from the ‘should of’s and focus on what you want. 

Sid Madge is founder of Meee (My Education Employment Enterprise) which draws on the best creativity and thinking from the worlds of branding, psychology, neuroscience, education and sociology, to help people achieve extraordinary lives.

To date, Meee has transformed the lives of over 20,000 people, from leaders of PLC’s and SME’s to parents, teachers, students, carers, the unemployed and prison inmates.

Sid Madge is also author of the ‘Meee in Minute’ series of books which each offer 60 ways to change your life, work-, or family-life in 60 seconds. 

Photo by Sabri Tuzcu