The Holiday season is coming up fast and I wanted to share my tips on managing your busy schedule during this fun, family oriented, yet sometimes, exhausting, season. The Holiday Season is filled with extra activities, gatherings, and other tasks. Yet you still have everything else that goes along with your everyday life. You can make the season special, and reduce the stress of trying to pack too much in to your days. Here are some strategies for you to use during the Holidays:
Be realistic in your expectations: Realize that everything takes some amount of time. When you plan your shopping, wrapping presents, or other projects-look at your week. Is it realistic? Can one human being possibly accomplish everything that you have planned? If not, eliminate, restructure, or delegate.
Set aside time for the important things: If you have an important work and or biz deadline or home project make sure that you have created time for it. Let go of the less important things. We pile on a whole bunch of “shoulds” during this time of year. Evaluate and prioritize. Ask how can I make this easier? The point is-that you do not have to say “yes” to every opportunity that arises in your life. Choose to do the things that truly have value for you and your family. One of my favorites is driving around neighborhoods with my kids and looking at Christmas lights. Another tradition is the candlelight service on Christmas Eve. But last year my daughters had to work on Christmas Eve and missed the church service for the first time ever. Did I stomp my feet and have a fit that tradition was broken? No, we held a candlelight service at home with prayer and singing silent night as a family with all the lights off except the tree and candles. It was beautiful. We adjusted and kept the spirit of the tradition alive.
Do one thing at a time. By focusing on one thing, you have a higher level of concentration and will be able to accomplish more in a shorter amount of time.
Avoid procrastination: Most procrastination stems from fear-fear of the unknown or fear of not accomplishing something successfully. Occasionally, you may procrastinate on tasks that you simply do not want to do-here is where you ask yourself if you can eliminate it, delegate it or hire someone else to do it. Overcoming procrastination involves one simple idea-just start. Start your task with some activity or aspect of the project. Remember that saying, “a body in motion tends to stay in motion”?
Ask for help. There is no law that says you have to do everything yourself. Ask for help in the kitchen, gift-wrapping, baking those goodies, shopping, and anything that begins to feel too big and overwhelming. Maybe you just need to ask for a back or foot rub.
Donate time and/or money to a worthy project/charity. This practice is rewarding for both you and the receivers. It takes the focus off the small stuff and is a reminder that there are people with needs and you can make a difference. Choose something that is close to your heart.
Practice ultimate self-care. Keep those massage appointments, take your vitamins, rest, hydrate, exercise, and do the things that make you feel good.
Live Joyfully and truly enjoy the Holiday Season. The heart of the season is appreciation. Appreciate and be thankful for your friends, your family, your home, your vehicle, your job….and so on. For most of us the list is long. Be in a state of gratitude and love. Be Happiness.
Following effective life management strategies during the Holidays will ease tension and allow you to live in the moment. Have a blessed Holiday Season and Joy Filled 2016.
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Coach and Trainer, Dr. Sheri Kaye Hoff, PhD.