325: How to have Less-Stressful, More Meaningful Holidays // Desirae Endres from Minimal-ish


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Well friends, it’s almost “the most chaotic time of the year!” Oh wait, that’s not how the song goes. It’s supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year; but holy moly, between school concerts and gift shopping and cookie exchanges and home decorations and holiday card sending and gingerbread making and church attending and traveling to see family, the holiday season can really start to feel like a bit much for many moms, myself included.

This year, I am committed to having a more intentional holiday season, which is why I was thrilled when one of my podcast host friends, Desirae Endres, recently released a new workbook, Your Minimal-ish Holidays: 30 Days to a More Intentional Season. I asked her to come on the podcast today to talk to us about some of the concepts in her new workbook so we can all have a holiday season that feels more grounded in our values and full of peace and joy this year.

Desirae is the host of the podcast Minimal-ish, where she talks all things realistic minimalism, motherhood, and intentional living each week. She is also a former high school English teacher, like me, and she is mom to two girls ages 6 and 1. In 2018, Desirae and her husband set out to live with less clutter in their home. Soon she found that the journey to less was about so much more than a clutter-free home. Five years later, she has learned to embrace a messy, realistic version of minimalism, and she teaches others how to fit minimalism into their unique life, family, personality, and season. 

In this episode, she will share with us some tips for having a minimal-ish holiday season, whatever that means for us personally.


3 Takeaways on Creating Less Stressful, More Meaningful Holidays

  1. Make some space for the incoming stuff by doing a pre-holiday declutter of the toys and arts/crafts. You don’t have to do an overhaul–even just giving yourself 20-30 minutes a few days in a row can really make a big difference. It’s a good time of year to be ruthless because you know stuff is coming in, and you can even use that to encourage your kids to let go of stuff they are no longer using and could honestly used by another child this holiday season.
  2. Make a values-based plan for the holiday season We plan for the holidays in the form of gift lists and our calendar, but we often forget to think about what we actually want for our season. What are the important values that you want to embody this year, and how can you make sure those things are a focus? Maybe it’s budget, coziness, fun, faith, or something else entirely, but get clear on your intentions before the invitations and stuff comes rolling in, so you can make space for what matters most to you.  
  3. Scale back on your magic-making efforts, and focus on being present with your kids. Kids are really good at creating their own magic when we scale back and give them space to do so. A practical step here would be to do a holiday brain dump of all the things you feel like you have to do or even want to do, whether it’s events or gift buying or traditions. Talk to your family about what they value most from the list, and then cross a few things off. It doesn’t mean you will never do those things again…it might just mean you don’t do them this year. 


>>>Are these tips from Desirae helpful? How do you manage the stress of this holiday season? Tell us in the comments below.


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Mentioned in the Episode:


  • Green Chef: Go to greenchef.com/3in30250 and use code 3in30250 for $250 off!
  • CoPilot: go.mycopilot.com/3IN30 to get a 14 day FREE trial with your own personal trainer

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