No matter how you try to avoid it, the holiday season is firing up. So…how about we not avoid it! Stress is created when we try to fight reality; when we try to avoid things that are going to happen. The holidays are going to happen. Thanksgiving is next week. Let’s accept summer is over and move into this next season with intention.

How do we do that? With a little bit of planning. Let’s bring consciousness to the choices we will need to make. I encourage you to start with you; ask yourself: “How do I want to feel this season?”  Why is checking in with yourself and how you want to feel important? Oh gee, how is it not?!? How you feel impacts everyone you come into contact with. Click To Tweet

Quick Emotional Intelligence 101: The thoughts we think create the feelings we feel. The way we feel, drives the action we take (do we react? not act? overreact?) If you’re a mom and you feel strung out, stressed, or resentful, that will impact your children. If you married or in a committed relationship and you feel overwhelmed, bitter, or lonely, that will impact your partner. If you feel unappreciated and undervalued at work, your coworkers will be impacted. Give yourself (and those around you) the gift of answering the question:

How Do I Want To Feel This Season?

Do you want to feel energized and joyous this season? What actions can you take to make that happen? Think of things that you do that leave you feeling energized and joyous: does a night out with neighbors leave you smiling and full of zing? Schedule one for this month. Do you feel joyous when you volunteer at your kids’ school or a local food bank? Plan a visit. What have you done past holiday seasons that doesn’t leave you feeling energized or joyous? Cancel those events. Say no. Draw some boundaries. You are in charge of you and of your life.

Do you want to feel calm and peaceful this season? What actions can you take to make that happen? Get out your calendar or print one up here. Leave spaces in your days. We are great at underestimating how long certain tasks take which sets us up to feel stressed as we race from one thing to the next. Trust me, if you only allot 30 minutes for grocery shopping you will let yourself down. It will take longer even if you’re only getting 2 things. From the time you get in your car, shop, pay, get back in your car and put it away? Look at what you have scheduled and allow yourself some buffers. Also, how much free time do you have on your December calendar? Time to sit by the fire? Time to browse a local book store? Create some. What kinds of things make you feel peaceful or calm? Do you enjoy writing holiday cards? Get them early and enjoy writing them in front of a fire. Did the mention of cards send a shiver up your spine? Choose not to send them this year. Which holiday parties or events do you dread? Choose to RSVP no. Which holiday events do you look forward to? Put them on your calendar and think of the fun you will have. How do you want to feel when you think about your finances? What do you need to do to feel that way? Plan your gift giving and stick to that plan.

Plan your holiday season instead of just moving through it. I have never had a client tell me they want to feel overwhelmed, gluttonous, or anxious yet, when we don’t deliberately plan, we start our January feeling that way. Choose to move consciously into this holiday season. The majority of us act proactively when the new year is involved. We think of what we want our new year to be like and create some sort of action plan to get there. Do the same for this holiday season. Get specific and create an action plan with these 5 Holiday Helper Questions:

  • How do you want to feel at holiday events?
  • How do you want to feel at home?
  • How do you want to feel when you’re shopping for gifts?
  • How do you want to feel when you’re attending family dinners?
  • How do you want to feel on December 26th? January 2nd?

If you’d like to dig further into this work, click here for some FREE HOLIDAY JOURNAL PROMPTS. The more consciously we live our lives, the better we feel. How do I know this? Because this is my life. I bounced around like I was putting out fires in my life for years. Doing what others wanted me to do, acting how I thought others wanted me to act, saying yes to most opportunities that came my way because I thought that’s what I should do. This is not a blog post on that but one urging you to get clear about what you want your life to be like these next 6 weeks. Why do I care? Well, it goes without saying that as a blog reader, I love you! But also because the more calm, in-control people walking around, the calmer and less-reactive our world is. If we all took care of our own emotional needs, we’d show up in our relationships, in work, in traffic, in supermarkets as calmer, more forgiving humans. And frankly, that’s all I really want for Christmas. Let’s go warriors. How do you want to feel this holiday season?

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