Christmas is fast approaching and a lot of people find this time of year very stressful. As the decorations appear in the malls and the mailers start piling up in the letterbox we all feel the pressure to have a perfect and magical Christmas. There are pictures everywhere of the perfect presents, the perfect table setting, the perfect homes to host and entertain your family in and the perfect outfits to wear. The whole point of Christmas seems to get lost in the commercialism. So how can we survive and actually get some joy out of this time of year? Here are some questions and suggestions to help along the way…
1. What’s important to you about this time of year?
Is it a special time to spend with loved ones, an opportunity to be grateful and say thank you, a time for rest and renewal, an opportunity to reconnect with old friends or serve the community? Are there cultural or family traditions that are really important to you? Write down in your journal what’s really important to you, and set a clear intention to focus only on those things.
2. Create a list of all the things that you feel you need to do before Christmas and then reflect on the questions below that seem appropriate for each item.
- What are the things you want to do?
- What are the things you feel you should do at this time of year?
- If you changed that word “should” to a “could” – what difference does that make? Would you still choose to do it?
- Is this activity giving me joy or causing me stress?
- Can I delegate it to someone else or is it something I need to delete from my list altogether?
I am a great believer in learning how to simplify things and will often ask “what is the purpose of this activity or task?” and “is there an easier way to accomplish this?” Making it easier my involve asking others for help and support, or even telling others “this is what I would like you to do for Christmas”. We can sometimes feel like we have to do everything on our own because we have been unable to say NO or ask for help – however we can learn to take responsibility for our experience and deal with it accordingly rather than blaming others for upsetting us at this time.
4. Take good care of your self.
It is very easy to be running from one thing to the next until we run out of steam. It is much more productive to make sure you build in some quiet time for yourself to relax and reflect on what you have accomplished and what the next most important things are to do. A little quite time to pause and plan regularly will help everything to flow much more easily and effortlessly and this can be achieved as you take time to journal, make yourself some lunch, have a hot bath or lie down for a short rest during the day.
If you find it hard to release the pressure call/ text Heather on 0212 406 535 or email email@example.com to have a chat about what support could be useful.
It has been just over a week now since I consciously chose to hit the pause button with work and life, to stop bringing new stuff in until I reached a point where I felt that I had dealt with everything that was already on my to do lists.
This website has been a result of that effort to clear my to do list – it feels so good now that this has finally gone live after pushing it to the bottom of the pile for so long. There is a real sense of completion by reaching this stage which allows me to continue more effectively with other areas within my business and life.
You know that every action we take uses energy, but did you know that every action we don’t take uses energy as well – mental and emotional energy?
Tolerations are those things you “put up with” on a daily basis that drain your energy and take your focus away from your ability to reach your desired goals. They develop because you have chosen not to deal with something. They are issues that are either so low on your list of priorities that you pay them little attention, or you feel powerless to do anything about them. For example, your car needs the oil checked, you have a disorganized office, you need to repair clothes or things in your home, you procrastinate or worry over parents, money problems and health issues.
Through becoming aware of tolerations in your life you can consciously decide which ones you want to change and take action on them. As you take action you will immediately feel an energy boost and an increase in your motivation. It then becomes easier to take action on the bigger more difficult areas of your life.
If there are tolerations that you feel you cannot change, you can choose to accept them, find a way to re-frame them in a positive light, or make peace with them, until you find a way to re-categorize them as things that you can change.
This week the challenge for me has been how to move forward steadily on quite a few different areas that I am focused on developing right now. It is so easy to procrastinate when their is a lot on your mind and everything is a priority!
So this week I have started to trial a new technique I have come across in a book by Mark Forster called Get Everything Done: And Still Have Time to Play. The bit about still having time to play was what caught my attention the most!!
So the new technique I discovered showed me how to work in short bursts of time which increase slowly as momentum is built.
I started with a list of 6 tasks I wanted to be working on steadily. I had a 2 hour block of time available to devote to these tasks. I started to work on each task on my list by using a timer to gave each task 5 min of my time. I must admit I thought what can you do in 5 min but I got started on doing something and that was the whole point- something is always better than nothing! Then next round I gave each task 10 min of my time and the third time round I gave each task 15 min.
It felt particularly good at the end of the day as I felt I had used the 2 hour space very effectively and I had addressed all of my 6 key projects on one day.
So this is a new tool I can add to my toolbox for times when I have a lot of projects on the go and want to make steady progress on them all at the same time. Why don’t you give it a go and let me know how this tip works for you? You can email me on firstname.lastname@example.org or call/text me on 0212 406 535 if you want to set up a time to have a chat and explore how I can support you with getting clarity around what you priorities are in the first place!