Gear up for the Holiday Season!


It may only be October, but that doesn’t mean it's too early to start getting ready for one of the busiest seasons of the year! 

Make sure you are organized this year and eliminate some of your holiday planning stress by getting as much as you can completed and decided before November. Too often, people leave all their running around, planning, shopping, and hosting to the last minute, and the holidays become a stressful and chaotic time that people don’t enjoy. To avoid that, there are a few key activities you can complete this month to make your life more organized and less stressful in the months ahead: 


Make your gift list 

You will probably already know ahead of time who you need to buy or make gifts for. So why not get a head start on your shopping and avoid the busy malls and delayed shipping? Start formulating a list of everyone you need to buy for, including family, friends, co-workers and neighbours. Contributing to a gift to charity or a gift exchange? Include those on the list as well. 

Instead of giving “things,” consider giving experiences or items that appeal to their interests without adding clutter to their lives. For examples, a gift certificate to their favourite spa for a massage, or a homemade seasoning mix.  Think about what would make them smile, instead of leaving your gifting to the last minute. Don’t be the person that buys chocolates for someone who is on a diet! 


Plan your hosting needs 

Hosting a meal (or multiple meals) takes a lot of advance planning and preparation. Start thinking about who will be hosting family and friends this year. If you are the one hosting, now is a good time to decide on what you will serve. Are you hosting a sit-down meal or buffet? Will your guests need to bring anything, and if so, what? 

You’ll also need to think beyond the food to the items and space you have. Will everyone fit at one gathering, or do you need to host separate parties? What about tables and chairs, place settings and serving dishes? If this is going to be an issue, consider hosting separate events, like one just for family, and one for friends. They don’t have to be the exact same either – one could be a potluck, the other could just be a cocktail party. Regardless of what you decide to do, it’s important to start planning early.


Prepare your wardrobe

Whether you’re hosting or attending parties and gatherings over the holidays, chances are you want to look your best. Now that you have some time, start shopping for any new wardrobe items you need. For example, if you need an outfit for the company holiday party, start by going through your current items to see if anything will work. If you need to get something new, start looking online and in store now so you find something you actually like, instead of settling on something because you left your outfit to the last minute.

Don’t forget about your accessories and shoes – make sure everything is cleaned and fixed up now before you get busy with other holiday activities. If anything needs major fixing or cleaning, take them into a repair shop now before the holiday rush.

Get everyone on board

Holiday planning is a team effort, not an individual task. Start connecting with your family and friends to share the responsibilities of the holiday season. It can be stressful to try and accomplish everything on your own, so don’t be afraid to pass on some of the tasks to others. The holidays are supposed to be enjoyed by everyone!

Minimalism: Read more about it!


Need some inspiration on changing your mindset? Before you start your next big organizing project, we recommend taking a look at these minimalist bloggers. Browse through their posts to learn more about how you can live a more simple and organized life.  

Change doesn’t happen overnight, but you can start changing the way you live by learning from these minimalists: 

Becoming Minimalist by Joshua Becker 

One of the more famous minimalist bloggers, Joshua Becker's blog offers insights into living with less – from how it can positively impact your life, to how-to guides for decluttering and minimalizing your wardrobe. For those who are new to minimalism, his post on Minimalist Living provides a great break down of what it actually means to live a minimalist lifestyle. 

The Minimalists by Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus 

Inspired by their own experience of changing to a minimalist lifestyle, Joshua and Ryan’s blog provides great advice on how you can apply minimalist principles to the different aspects of your life. For people who need some help getting started, or want to encourage friends and family to try, check out the 30-Day Minimalism Game post and see how well you do! 


Be More with Less by Courtney Carver 

Courtney’s lifestyle blog is focused on living with less stuff to make more time and space for the things and people you love. A popular topic on her blog is how to minimalize your wardrobe, especially for people who may have a difficult time parting with their clothing or saying no to another purchase. You can read more about Project 333, her fashion minimalist challenge, here


The Tiny Life by Ryan Mitchell 

At the Tiny Life, Ryan talks about more than just living minimally – he also covers topics related to living in tiny homes and homesteading. All of his posts touch on how you can live a simpler lifestyle whether it is through the size of home you live in, the items you buy, and how you consume them. The extensive blog is updated regularly and contains a wealth of knowledge on how you can change your mindset and lifestyle. 


Miss Minimalist by Francine Jay  

Francine’s Miss Minimalist blog covers topics related to living a simple life – everything from your wardrobe, home spaces, office and more. On Monday’s Francine highlights real minimalists in her segment “Real Life Minimalists” where readers can learn about the journey of others who have changed their living habits to live simply.  


Changing your Mindset


Getting organized requires a change in mindset and being open to learning new ways of living and using your space. However, sometimes change can be challenging to achieve.

 Often when Calm Order works with new clients, we encourage them to start reading and listening to bloggers like Joshua Becker, the minimalist, before we even start working together on the project. This way, they can start to learn about different approaches and ideas on living a more simple and organized life. For example, Joshua Becker posts often about living with less and focusing on experiences in life instead of the “stuff” that we accumulate. 

According to Karen at Calm Order, reading and hearing about different mindsets and ways of living can get us thinking differently about our own lives. It prepares us to move forward.

“I believe that what we focus on is what we create, so when we focus on the type of life we want to lead, it helps us get rid of the stuff,” says Karen.

“We’re able to rethink what we really need, not the other random stuff in our lives.”

If you’re considering undertaking a major organizing project in your life, consider researching other views on living more organized. Whether it is Joshua Becker or another minimalist blogger, there are many different mindsets and points of view you can read about to help you change your own thinking. 

In order to maintain an organized life and organized space, change will be required to your current lifestyle and routine to ensure it stays calm and ordered. In your research, take note of what ideas and lifestyle changes appeal to you, and then use them as a guide to change your own mindset.

Change doesn’t have to be a bad thing – when it comes to organizing, it can be the key to ensuring you spend more time focused on the important things in life.

Get out and get living an inspired life.