It’s that time of year again. The bells are ringing and Christmas music wafts through your radio and the store loudspeakers. It’s fun and crazy and stressful and, well, a time of year that I always feel like I’m behind on just about everything. This year so far, I’m ahead of the game and hoping it stays that way.
I went online to look for some time saving tips for the holidays. There were all the usual ones, like marking “due dates” on your calendar, and simplifying gatherings and gift-giving. But one in particular caught my eye: prioritize. This is something we all do instinctively when we’re uber-busy. It made me stop and think about the season, though, and about what’s important. I want to slow down and enjoy this holiday season, to feel more of its magic.
So instead of time-saving tips, I offer my own version of do’s and don’ts for this Christmas season. These are only suggestions, but they are things I hope to incorporate into my December.
DON’T walk swiftly past the Santa exhibit at the mall, focused on the next store or the shopping list in your hand.
DO take a few moments to watch the scrub-faced, Sunday-best-dressed children as they meet Santa. Their reactions are varied and priceless and always bring a smile to my face.
DON’T leave things (like shopping) to the last minute—unless you thrive on stress.
DO try to find a balance between the work of Christmas and enjoying its true purpose, whatever you perceive that to be.
DO stop, take a deep breath, and smell the roses, er, evergreens, once in a while.
DON’T stare at all the last minute items stuffed around the checkout counter. Instead, wish the person behind you, in front of you, or both, a good day.
DON’T lose yourself in the season. DO take time out just for you. Personally, I suggest a bubble bath, a good book, and maybe a nice glass of wine.
DO remember to keep up with whatever exercise program you follow.
DO design a season that feeds your soul. This is the time to bank all those good feelings deep in the warm coals of your heart. That way someday, if you have a not-so-great day, you can fuel your own sense of well-being with these memories.
What else can we come up with to make this season relaxed and happy? Got any ideas? I’d love to hear them. Maybe we can cozy up to a cyber yule log with a cup o’ not-so-cyber hot buttered rum and come up with some ideas, huh?