Fine Memories or Forgettable Mess?
On this busiest shopping weekend, phone purchasing something can be a fine memory in the making or a most forgettable mess. We change how folks act or what they do, but we get to choose how we think about it.
Surviving Disasters of the Holidays
Yes, Virginia, it can be done. We can get to the New Year with our Joyful Jolly still fully functioning. As usual as they might seem, personal disasters — explosion, implosion, and meltdowns — are not a necessary result of the Holiday Season.
Here’s how to avoid them entirely and maybe even have the energy to help others to do the same.
- Allow too much time for everything. When we’ve got more to do, we seem to think we can do more in less time. We hurry up. Everyone else is hurrying up too. Traffic jams, extra programs, sales at the mall, and holiday traditions pile on us all. We funnel in the same direction . . . bumping into one another. Accidents happen. Let the other guy go first because you left early.
- Make a list and check it twice. Other times of year, a list might be useful but during the holidays, a list is major stress relief. Get those details of what to do in one place on paper, where they’ stop mentally nagging you to remember them. The accomplishment of crossing off something that’s done is a feeling that will keep your good mood moving forward with you.
- Enjoy the view. Set aside time along the way to relax. Beautiful things happen this time of year. Let your eyes, your mind, and your spirit take them in. The time you take to do that with folks you love will refuel you. You’ll come back ready to do more than you might have had you kept chugging ahead. You’ll be brilliant and appreciated. A little appreciate — of the world and of you — does a lot to keep a joyful, jolly mood in season.
- Realize that everyone is a person. The clerk at the store, the voice on the phone, the delivery man or woman at your door, the folks walking around you on the street . . . they all have thoughts, feelings, and the same sorts of stresses as you. . . . maybe more. See them. Smile. The smiles they return will make you smile even more.
- Be a person too. It’s easy to start attempting superhuman feats during this season of generosity. Set kind and generous priorities. Know that to give well also means taking care of yourself for your family and friends. All of us can only do what is humanly possible. The world won’t end if you decide not to make cookies this year.
Follow these simple ideas and you just might find that you enjoy the holidays. Decide from this moment what you care about and let that be your guide when you feel yourself starting to falter.
Besides, when the cranky folks decide to explode all over us for their own unpleasantness, nothing beats a smile and an answer like, “Hey, I’m sorry that’s how you feel. . . . I’m finding everyone is so generous and joyful!”
How will you manage yourself this holiday season?
–ME “Liz” Strauss
Work with Liz!!