07 December 2023

Useful tips

Less-is-more Christmas


Soy schnitzel instead of Christmas carp? Donations instead of gifts? Tea lights instead of fairy lights? Making Christmas more sustainable doesn't mean celebrating frugally, cutting back or without indulgence, but changing your perspective and setting different priorities. 


"Too many people spend money they haven't earned to buy things they don't need to impress people they don't like." This is how the American entertainer Will Rogers summed it up a hundred(!) years ago. Nothing has changed since then, on the contrary, Christmas seems to be degenerating more and more into a battle of consumerism and the "festival of love" is drowning in mountains of presents, food and decorative kitsch. 


So it's high time to shift down a gear and remind ourselves what Christmas is actually about: spending time with people we love, enjoying giving gifts and celebrating together. This can also be done with less, because sustainability and enjoyment are not mutually exclusive. A consciously sustainable Christmas can even foster a deeper appreciation of the festive season by drawing our attention to what is really important. 


Small and individual 


The Christmas season begins with Advent and with it the Advent calendar. There's even the option of keeping it small and individual. 24 fabric bags or colorful boxes filled with sweets, loving messages or personal mini gifts every day are probably even more fun than a uniform mass product from the supermarket. 


Locally produced 


Christmas markets spring up everywhere from mid-November. But do we really need the 283rd Christmas tree bauble, which may have been made in another part of the world? If you're going to store at the Christmas market, then perhaps it's better to buy local products from small producers who are supported in this way. 


Time instead of stuff 


The same applies to Christmas presents. Instead of ordering from wholesalers online, buying from small local retailers not only offers a better experience, but also ensures their survival. The next step on the sustainability ladder is "time instead of stuff". Experience gifts, such as a joint trip to the toboggan run or an invitation to a cabaret, are remembered longer than a sweater or wine cooler. 


Those who want to make an even bigger difference with their gifts can also give "gifts with a purpose" - in the form of donations to charitable organizations. There are many options, including the popular and well-known ones.


"Furoshiki" and newspaper 


Gifts need to be wrapped. Unfortunately, most gift wrapping is only used once and ends up in the bin afterwards. A particularly beautiful and unusual wrapping is a "furoshiki". The gift is artfully wrapped in a square cloth (e.g. from a former T-shirt or table linen). There are plenty of instructions for this on the internet, and of course this tying technique originates from the land of aesthetic refinement - Japan. Another option and a classic among sustainable packaging is newspaper, which can be individually painted or decorated with dried leaves, fir branches or twigs. 


Let there be light - with meaning! 


Christmas time is light time. However, high energy prices are now putting many a fairy light chain in chains. If you want a festive sparkle, you can save energy by using LED lights and timers. This way, it only lights up when it really makes sense and not all night long. 


Keyword: candles. Here, too, you can make a difference if you make sure that they are free from animal ingredients, kerosene and palm oil when you buy them. (And even if beeswax candles are more expensive, nothing can replace their wonderful scent). 


Time for silence 


Last but not least: we give ourselves a sustainable gift when we use the holidays for a digital detox - in other words, time for silence instead of time in front of a screen. A games evening with friends, cooking together or going for a walk is not only good for our environment, but also for our friendships and our own souls. After all, sustainability has a lot to do with happiness


Economist Niko Peach is also convinced of this: "We are currently getting bogged down in a stimulus-flooded consumer sphere that is using up our scarcest resource, namely time. By shedding the ballast of prosperity, we would have the chance to concentrate on the essentials instead of suffering dizzy spells in the hamster wheel of commercial self-fulfilment. Using a few things more intensively and simply ignoring certain options with confidence means less stress and therefore more happiness." 



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гр. София 1000,
бул. Тодор Александров 18

Working hours

Понеделник - Петък 8:30 - 17:30

© UNIQA Bulgaria