Every week we will be sharing some experiences of our readers during this #OccupyAdvent Challenge. Don't worry, if we choose to share your story, it will be anonymous. Feel free to send us your Challenge "stories" to firstname.lastname@example.org, on our Facebook Personal Page, or our Business Page.
Here are the guidelines for the #OccupyAdvent 24 Day Challenge. Remember that the purpose of this is to improve ourselves, assist those around us, and prepare us for Christmas. These are only guidelines, adjust them to accommodate your lifestyle.
1. Contemplate the Meaning of Christmas.
This time of year isn't only about ourselves, family, friends or even strangers. This time of year is about the birth of Christ. How are you preparing for His Birthday? Without Him, this season would not exist, so let's show some thanks!
2. Simplify Your Life.
This may include limiting your access to social media and increasing time within your day for reading, organizing, or helping others. You know better than anyone what consumes your time and yet doesn't have much merit. Spend more time with family and friends, these are the moments that you will remember when you get older and the kids are grown. Don't have regrets!
3. Don't Purchase Anything You Don't NEED!
Yes, we know this is difficult this time of year, but our consumerism mentality is overbearing. (Maybe this is one of the reasons I cannot stand Black Friday, or Black Saturday, or Cyber Monday...) For me, it will be difficult to drive past Starbucks without a Skinny Peppermint Mocha, but instead of spending the money there, I can donate food to the local pantry or purchase gifts for families in need. That cup of Peppermint Mocha will be so much more enjoyable on December 26th by waiting!
4. Internal and External Silence.
We all have loud, busy, chaotic lives 12 months out of the year. Maybe these 24 days we can occupy ourselves internally and externally with moments of silence. Take a few minutes out of each day, even 5 minutes to sit in silence. Don't try to plan your next party, or dwell on all the gifts you have to purchase, but enjoy those moments of silence. They are more important than you realize.
5. Keep Perspective - Pay it Forward
Charity is the highest form of respect for others. Whether you give a meal to the homeless man standing on the corner or choose to give your waiter an extra percentage of a well-earned tip, these are the moments that make living worth while, because for once you are not making it about yourself. The most important thing to remember: don't brag about it. Once you tell the world your inner most actions, those beautiful forms of charity begin to loose bits of their luster.
Take Control of Your #OccupyAdvent 24 Day Challenge!
How will you push yourself to be a better you?