Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Christmas And Overload

I love putting up the stockings for Christmas!  If you look closely at my new header pic you will notice that magenta stocking is not yet done. 

Mei Mei's stocking is high on my list of Christmas priorities.  And believe me, she will make sure I complete it!  She reminds me every day!

I am enjoying this holiday season.  I am mindfully willing myself to enjoy it.  You see, a most terrible thing happened a few weeks ago.  Lizzy said how she LOVES Christmas!  And before I could stop myself I said I DID NOT LIKE Christmas! 

How terrible is that?  I was actually horrified at my Grinch-likeness!  And that comment really made me think about changes I need to make to enjoy the season again.  I am doing less this year--less buying, less spending, less outside events.  BUT, I am also doing more!  More time at home, more time with the kids, more time reflecting on the true meaning of the season.  I am trying not to do anything I don't have to.  I am trying to let go of my perfectionism and let good enough be just that--I've (almost) quit worrying about buying the perfect gifts.

I am currently reading The Overload Syndrome by Richard Swenson.  Recommended.  I found his chapter on "Choice and Decision" to be especially applicable to Christmas.  Here are some of his main points:
  1. Simplify decision making by limiting choices.
  2. Simplify meal choices (I have started having pasta every Monday night, Tues is Mexican, Fri is pizza--even just having these three nights figured out is stress reducing.)
  3. Make decisions and stick with them. (When I see a gift in the store, I buy it and quit worrying about if it will go on sale, if I will find something better etc.)
  4. Value traditions (I'm a lover of traditions!).
  5. Be wary of advertisements knowing that ads complicate, not simplify decisions.
  6. Keep "good enough" over "better"--don't upgrade when we already have what we need
  7. Choose appropriate load, not overload. (Swenson says to remember that when we insist on living overloaded lives our choices not only damage our own well-being but also inflict damage on those around us including our families.)
  8. Own our own decisions and realize we can choose our own attitudes whatever circumstances we find ourselves in.
  9. Pray for wisdom in decision making--both big and small.
  10. Daily choose the things of God.


Lisa said...

Hi there! What has been helpful for us is focusing on the current season of Advent (preparing our hearts for the arrival of Jesus) rather than focusing on Christmas. I think it truly helps keep things in perspective and it keeps us going with grateful hearts in this time of busyness and craziness. We set up an Advent wreath at our dining table, and it's a beautiful tradition!

Ann said...

Lisa, I was raised in a very liturgical church where Advent was a BIG deal! I love it too and we have always had an Advent wreath--and always will! I plan on blogging about that next :-)

angela ford said...

We exchanged names so there's one gift each this year. Maybe stockings.... we'll see. Who needs more STUFF anyway?