If you live in the United States you've probably seen "Boxing Day (Canada)" on your calendar following Christmas. Perhaps you've also wondered, wtf is Boxing Day?
Well, the origins are a bit sketchy but celebration of the day has nothing to do with the sport of boxing.
Some Minor History: traditionally the alms box (a box to collect money for the poor) was opened and distributed to those in need on the day following Christmas. Voila, Boxing Day!
In our family we box up clothes and toys that can better benefit someone else on the day(s) following Christmas. It's a nice time to reflect on all of our abundant blessings from the past year and send out some blessings to someone else.
There are a lot of things you can box up and let go of before entering this new year:
We know we won't find our happiness in material possessions. But we might not know where else to look.
Minimalism is not about owning a prescribed number of things or living in an RV off the grid. Minimalism is a tool to rid yourself of life's excess in favor of focusing on what's important to you.
Naturally this will look different for everyone. But by letting go of our love and pursuit of belongings, we create room in our life to focus on health, relationships, our passion, and our personal growth. By clearing the clutter from life's path, we make room for the most important aspects of life.
What are you carrying or pursuing that's limiting your life? Let that shit go.
(The only Toxic we need in our lives. Thanks, Britney.)
We've all held on to someone who didn't deserve to be in our life: someone who doesn't add value, isn't supportive, drains us without giving back, prevents us from growing, always plays the victim...
Breakups are hard. But that's not a just reason for staying in a lousy relationship. Family, friends, lovers, co-workers, acquaintances. If someone is only draining your life, it's time to end that relationship.
We all have guilt and limiting thoughts about having debt.
We need to stop labeling debts as "good" or "bad".
It doesn't matter if it's a mortgage or a student loan or a Nordstrom's credit card: if the debt is heavy and limiting the life you live, get rid of it.
Acknowledge the debt. Remove the guilt. Make a plan to pay it.
Having debt doesn't define your worth. Don't let it define the quality of your life either.
Sorry Syndrome: apologizing when one should not feel the need to say sorry.
"Sorry, may I use the bathroom?"
"Sorry, I have a question."
Sorry is a crutch - a tyrannical lady-crutch. It's a space filler, a hedge, a way to politely ask for something without offending, to appear "soft" while making a demand. - Jessica Bennett
Knowing how to apologize for something you regret is one thing. Apologizing for basically existing is another.
Words are powerful, replace "sorry" with "thank you". Instead of saying, "sorry for rambling", you can say, "thank you for listening." Instead of "Sorry" when you move past someone on the train, "thank you for making room". Apologizing is not only a rejection of the nice gesture, it makes things weird; saying "thank you" recognizes and accepts the kind act.
Be like Beyoncé and adopt an "I ain't sorry" attitude. Take up space. Exist.
Look around: we are all multitasking. We're doing more than we've ever done, attempting to fill every interstitial zone with more work. Everywhere the same scene: heads tilted downward, faces lost in glowing screens, technology turning people into zombies.
Busy works well for factories, robots, and fascism, but not so great for anyone who's attempting to do something worthwhile with their waking hours.
When we're engaged in focused work, working without pause from task to task, we're using our left brain. We also need quiet, meditative time for our right brain to process information, come up with creative solutions, and make value-based choices.
To simplify very complex science: effort and action comes from the left brain, thought and creativity come from the right brain. The more action the left brain takes, the more stifled the creativity of the right brain. The calmer the left brain is, the more the right brain flourishes.
While both sides are essential and must work in conjunction, we as a culture have come to value the work of the left brain over that of the right.
Bringing back balance between the two sides is of utmost importance. Creativity represents one's true voice and is what makes the individual unique. Whether you're an actual artist or someone who needs to solve problems as part of your job (literally everyone), creativity is essential. The more we go go go, the harder it is to hear our creative voice and know who we really are and what we want/need.
So to bring back balance you either have to delegate some tasks from that never-ending to-do list or increase the amount of time spent in creative play. More on how/what to delegate here.
Right Brain Exercises You Can Do Right Now
Write a story
Sing, play, or listen to music
Laugh, dance, get outside
Visualize something you want to have happen
Take a swim or bath
Draw, paint, color, knit, anything tactile
Plan a trip, booking it is optional
Try an everyday task with your non-dominant hand
Blocks to Creativity:
Scrolling Social Media
Did this resonate with you? What will you box up and leave behind?