Take It Easy! Life Is Short!

Everyone, including myself, is running around getting ready for the rest of the holidays, and I mean “running around”! We’re in the home stretch now for getting our homes sufficiently decorated, getting those gifts bought and in the mail, making sure all our cards are written and sent out, choosing our menus, and finalizing our holiday plans so we don’t feel left out of all “the fun” socially. Then there’s the usual busyness of housework, making meals, working jobs so we can pay the bills, raising our children, getting some sleep, and of course, finding some time for self care, like indulging in a measly workout here and there. Not to mention the little detail of having an occasional conversation with our partner, or loved ones!

As I participate in, and observe the race all around, I’ve decided that three things are important to keep in mind to preserve one’s sanity, and to actually derive some fun and meaning around the holidays:

  1. Check your perfectionism. Even Martha Stewart, the maven of style, class, and coziness, has legions of “elves” all around to create the illusion of perfection. So don’t buy into the invention. Instead, establish a “good enough” standard which allows for the realities of your time and energy constraints, allows you to enjoy yourself, and to stay focused on your goals for the season. At this juncture, less is more. Keep those expectations in check.
  2. Let others help. Don’t over-function your way into martyrdom. You’ll be a more pleasant companion if you let other people share in the labor of making holiday traditions happen. The people around you will feel more invested in activities they have helped to create. You’ll also be more rested if you don’t view the holidays as a “one man/woman show”.
  3. Practice the fine art of saying “no” if you are feeling maneuvered into doing more than your fair share of holiday activity. If you have a partner or sibling who seems to be bailing out on you, and expecting you to compensate for their inactivity, then draw a line in the sand, and let consequences happen. You’ll then avoid some resentment around feeling exploited.

Stay conscious!

Susan Lager

PS.  Check out my new eBooks and articles for sale later this week at the “Products” page of this website: SusanLager.com. You’ll get “pre-published” first dibs on great tools for better communication, and better relationships!

About Susan Lager

ABOUT ME Susan Lager, LICSW, BCD I grew up in New Rochelle, a suburb of NYC, lived in Manhattan for ten years during college and graduate school, and escaped the madness for the wilds of Maine to be with Thom, the sweet man I'm still married to after 34 years. (We have an awesome 29 year old son named Alec who will run the free world someday). I knew I'd survive the relocation from New York when I discovered the scenic, historic little city of Portsmouth, on the coast of New Hampshire, with its winding streets, great restaurants, and music everywhere. I was especially thrilled to attend the Portsmouth Psychotherapy Institute, an offshoot of the B.I.P., where I did post-graduate training, and then went into private practice creating The Couples Center PLLC, doing psychotherapy, with individuals, couples and groups. In 2010 I opened a division of the practice called COUPLESPEAK™, providing live and online coaching, training programs, workshops, and written materials for people in different kinds of partnerships. I'm still passionate about the work, which is NEVER boring! My clients are courageous pioneers, and they've taught me lots I'll pass on......
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