I get it. I am a mom, a woman, a daughter, a wife, a friend, a business owner, a coach.
I know there are simply things that HAVE to get done in December.
I’ll spare you the talk on reducing that list. Although, I seriously invite you to look at what can be eliminated.
Instead, my invitation is about how to approach the “extras” that get added to your list. It happens to all of us. It’s just that in December the added obligations are a unifying experience.
What’s your motto when more is expected from you? (And remember, actions speak louder than words!).
My motto used to be: When the going gets tough, the tough get going! I wasn’t aware how this phrase was running my life. Yet, in December, it was so obvious that I would push through every task that had to get done.
Of course, pushing myself through situations doesn’t leave much room for joy in the moment. Any fleeting sense of joy I experienced was about crossing something off my list of things that had to get done in December.
The bottom line was that as much as I loved the holidays, or at least the idea of the holidays, a part of me dreaded them.
What I came to learn is the dread isn’t about the holidays themselves. Rather, it was about how I “tackled” challenges.
There wasn’t a sense of enjoying the journey. I wanted to get to the destination of having the perfect Christmas. Each year, according to my ego, I did pretty damn well reaching that destination because I sacrificed!
Sacrifice is the message embedded so deeply within our society. To receive, you must earn it.
Through all my sacrificing in Decembers’ past I received a version of Christmas that fit an ideal standard of what the holidays should look like.
Yet, because of my approach, the personal meaning of the season (miracles, joy and love) was limited to only when everything was off my to-do list. Of course, that never happened until Christmas Eve. So I would take my hard-earned 48 hours of joy and feel a brief relief. Then, soon after Christmas, it was time to get the house in order, toys put away and it was back to my “to-doing.”
“To-doing” is where my comfort was for a long time. “To-doing” was how I made myself worthy enough to receive. Ultimately, “to-doing” was not fun.
Stopping the “to-doing” was a hard habit to break. Fortunately, if you are willing to have the courage to listen to your negative feelings, I promise you, they’ll guide you back to how to live your life more joyfully.
The courageous part is you have to decide you are worthy without your to-doing.
When you claim yourself to be worthy, you make yourself the priority. You have a deep knowingness that you must provide the oxygen mask to yourself exactly so you have more to give to others.
Good news! Giving yourself oxygen in December is really easy to do. All you do is offer yourself choices and give your self-care top priority.
As you care for yourself, you’ll actually start to get excited to put up your tree, buy presents, wrap gifts or make cookies. If you don’t right now, at some point you will realize (or won’t) that everything will turn out just fine.
Christmas has many meanings. One of the messages I clearly see is how this “illegitimate” child was born amongst animals to remind us that we are each worthy, no matter our backgrounds or what people say or think of us.
As odd as it sounds, make yourself worthy this December, and see how much more meaningful and miraculous the season can be!