A friend of mine told me about a great project they're doing this year at her workplace. She works at a big company and has several coworkers to buy gifts for every year. It's very stressful and time-consuming to figure out the best gifts for everyone and then run around after work shopping in crowded malls.
So this year, instead of exchanging gifts, they're participating in the Adopt-A-Family program instead. She's pretty high in the company, so she was in a position to make the decision with a couple of coworkers. They sent out an email saying that since they were all so fortunate to have good jobs, this year instead of buying gifts for coworkers, they would buy them for people who were down on their luck.
The whole office is jazzed about the project. Everyone was asked to pledge the amount of money they felt comfortable with, and with that sum they were able to "adopt" ten families. They're going to divide the shopping list and then have a wrapping party to celebrate. Instead of giving a coworker something they don't need and may not even use, they can be happy knowing the food and clothing and toys they're wrapping are on their way to families who will really appreciate it.
What a great way to get into the holiday spirit, and give up a lot of stress in the bargain. If your office hasn't made a plan yet and you have anything to say about it, you might want to give this a try. Or at least think about it for next year.
Click here to find out about the Adopt-A-Family program in Los Angeles. A lot of different organizations run these projects, so the best thing to do would be a google search for your area.
What's your office doing for the holidays this year? Tell us about it in the Comments section.