BONUS 036 – How to Avoid Going (Utterly) Mad During the Holidays

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Holidays are coming! REALLY. It’s coming at us like a runaway steam train and there’s no denying there’s a chance a few of us might jump aboard the Hot Mess Express.

Between juggling:

  • running our business,
  • the kids,
  • the in-laws,
  • the social schedules
  • don’t forget to make a reindeer costume for the school play,
  • buy everyone who sits within a 1/2 mile radius of your desk a thoughtful, kind, gluten-free but delicious holiday gift
  • oh and the budgets,
  • the clients who are more on edge than usual,
  • did I mention the friggin’ IN-LAWS,
  • finding the start of the Scotch tape (AGAIN), oh crap!

I broke another nail, when will they all just leave me alone? Will they notice if I lock myself in the bathroom for the next 30 minutes?

Ahhhhhhh, the holidays.

Why not try something different this year? I am proposing that every listener to The Simplifiers Podcast vows to have a SIMPLE Christmas (Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, insert whatever you’re celebrating this winter here) this year.

Your mental health might thank me later.

No, I mean, REALLY… let’s SIMPLIFY, you guys!

Tips to simplify the holiday season

Get Back to the Core

For me, the most important thing this holiday season is to spend quality time with my family. That’s it. That’s my compass.

If I set my focus here, I promise to not go overboard with everything else. My parents are getting older. My kids won’t be little much longer. Before we know it, it’ll all be gone in a flash.

And so, I promise not to be worried if the house is a mess, or stress if I don’t have the PERFECT decor hung, or the ultimate hot chocolate bar with 20 different toppings for the kiddos. (I mean, REALLY!) Or if I’m doing a good job capturing it all to be picture perfect on Instagram or not.

What matters most is eye contact, snuggles, slowing down, time around the kitchen table playing board games and eating cookies. Burning toast and sipping coffee. Crisp winter walks in nature and afternoon naps, just ’cause we can. Messiness and mischief. And unplugging. Surrender.

QUESTION

What’s your core desire – the one most important thing you hope to receive this holiday season?

Set your sights here with gentleness and grace… and agree to let go of the rest.

Make Saying No Great Again

The beauty of being an adult is that you always have a choice.

Even when you think you don’t. If you’re being pulled in multiple directions to visit various family members on Christmas and Boxing Day, but you really just want to stay home in your PJs and binge watch Riverdale… give yourself permission to do that. Get great at saying no, especially if there’s not one iota of a chance that saying yes will be fun, pleasurable or even mildly amusing.

If you’re juggling divorced parents, or relatives that cause awkwardness that could be cut with a knife, ask, ‘is this working?’

If it isn’t, find an alternative. Arrange a Skype call instead. Or meet up for New Years’. Something. Anything that’s different and breaks out of old, painful habits where NO ONE is having fun. As my friends XT and Pixie cheer, “Camp, No Thank you!”

QUESTION

What’s one thing you could say NO to right now that’ll feel great once you do? (ahem, go for it!)

Experiences vs. Stuff

This year, I’m not asking for things on my wishlist.

For one, we’re headed to the states and not taking much luggage. For two, besides a few books that would bring me joy, I’m much more interested in having new experiences in the new year rather than a house full of stuff.

Think scuba diving or horseback riding. Watercolor classes or hot yoga. Zorbing! Or going to a “make your own kombucha” workshop… that sounds way better to me. And the ultimate way to minimize and simplify. Less wrapping paper, too!

QUESTION

What’s one experience you’d like to try out in the new year? Tell me on Instagram at @thesimplifiers!

Nourish Yourself Like a Boss

You might be taking some time off work but that doesn’t mean you can’t still be the total boss you are the rest of the year. So, rock those wooly pajamas. Whip out those fancy bath bombs. Go ahead and lock yourself in the bathroom for bit. (I give you permission.)

And more importantly, always check in with yourself, every single day. A board meeting of one. And ask yourself this one simple thing…

What would nourish me right now?

Eat the pie. Take the nap. Go for the run. Play with the slime. Roll around in the snow. Get to the sauna. Or do nothing.

It’s up to you. Be assertive. Say what you need with your outside voice and encourage your peeps to do the same. Don’t buy in to the frenzy. Keep your ‘love tank’ full. And slow your pace way, way down.

And just one final whisper, just from me to you, dear friend… come in closer.

Stop what you’re doing right now. Look up.

You’re standing on a giant ball of matter, whizzing around in space. That’s pretty freakin’ cool, if you ask me.

If ever you get caught up in the frenzy (and Lord knows, we all will at some point), I want you to promise you’ll hear my voice in your ear say…

Stop. Look up. Deep breath.

You are magnificent.

And it’s all going to be okay.

You are not responsible for everyone else’s needs. Everyone else’s drama. And you’ve chosen NOT to take a ride on the Hot Mess Express this year. Well done, you.

It may not look perfect. But it will feel simpler. I promise.

You can do this, I believe in you.

It’s time to SIMPLIFY.


If this thought of the day inspired you…

Snap a photo of you doing the thing and send it to me via Instagram, privately or publicly… just tag @thesimplifiers – I’ll be your virtual accountability buddy in your quest to simplify your life.

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As always friends, keep things simple.

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