There are lots of things we do to get ready for the holidays. Christmas lights, tinsel, elves, credit card debt, you know—the usual stuff. Here are three things you can ‘UN’-do to cut the mental fat, simplify your life, and help others as you get ready to detangle 2013, and turn over a new leaf for a new year. 


Count your blessings not your Facebook friends. If you have added people you don’t know, people you don’t like, or people you have outgrown, it’s time to do an annual festive trimming of the friends list. Go ahead. Unfriend. And while you’re at it, look into your security settings and make sure that you know who has access to your photos, wall, and status updates. It’s seriously refreshing to know that the people in your feed are all friends that you care about and with whom you enjoy communicating.


Every so often I catch myself jumping with a Pavlovian reaction to the ‘ding’ of my emails streaming into my smartphone. I drool, I can’t concentrate, and I am compelled to see what someone has sent me. Then I find out that it’s a newsletter advertising 20% off of a product I don’t use anymore. Blarg. It would be ok if this was a once in a while thing but come on. We know the drill. Take this scenario and multiply times a zillion. Who amongst us doesn’t know the tease of hearing ‘DING DING DING DING DING’ of incoming messages only to be horrifically let down by the onslaught of useless e-crap that has us swearing (in the spirit of Vivien Leigh) “AS GOD IS MY WITNESS.. I shall UNSUBSCRIBE!!” But then we get sidetracked. With life, kids, work—basically even picking lint off of a sweater has trumped clearing out my email of this stuff. The mere thought of going through all your newsletters to cull them down is overwhelming. Right? Nuh-uh. Go to your inbox. Search ‘unsubscribe.’ And there you have it. All of your e-newsletters should be right there. Then you can keep your favourites (like those incredibly awesome ones from and ditch the rest! You will be breathing way easier in no time.


Every year I go into my closet and say ‘I have nothing to wear’ while I petulantly flick at my shirts and dresses like they were a collection of burlap sacks. It’s funny how that happens. From one minute to the next we can go from feeling like we have everything to feeling like we have nothing. Well, here’s how to make your ‘nothing’ do something amazing for someone else. Haven’t worn it in a year? 2 years? 3? Give it away. When you look at it do you say, “..yes, but maybe I’ll need it one day”? You know the answer already. You won’t. Someone else however needs it now. Are you storing things in boxes that you haven’t opened in over 18 months? Wave goodbye. The things that we think we need, can weigh on us terribly. The things that we really do need, make us feel light, energetic, and focused. This is not to say that a collection, a special memento, or anything else that has become sentimental has to go or that you don’t really need it. It just means that you are giving conscious thought to the things in your life, and their place around you. Just so you know there are things I will never give away. Ever. And I will totally freak out if someone suggests that I do. Likewise there will be certain newsletters that make me perk up when I see them magically appear in my inbox. And certain people I haven’t seen for years that I love showing up in my feed. But there is a sense of clarity that comes with choice. Clearing things out and realizing where they belong in your life is an amazing feeling. And that’s a pretty great way to go into a brand new year.


Oldie But Goodie –> I also posted this on YMC last year when we were busy being scared of the Mayans and all that jazz: