A funny thing happened to me heading into this holiday season. As I was gearing up to end the year as strong as it started, I was evaluating different opportunities that had presented themselves when I got a strong signal that I wasn’t to do any of them. None. Not like this tiny one and ignore the rest. No, the signal was none, zero, nada.
I’m sure like a lot of you, even though the holidays tend to be the busiest time of year, for some reason our work obligations tend to kick up as well. Do you ever notice that? Every year as I’m sitting down for all the festivities I’m usually bringing some version of a burned out, stressed out self to the holiday table. I would love to blame this on something, someone else but the reality is I can only look in the mirror. It’s true, there’s no one to blame but myself.
I don’t know if it’s a second wind of sorts but I felt it this year. Right around the beginning of November, I got a burst of energy, like the kind you can feel when you stay up too late and your body all of a sudden kicks in and you’re wide awake. Do you know that feeling? If you have children, you definitely know this can happen to them. They get over-tired and then you’re screwed, there’s no getting them to bed, it’s a weird thing.
Ok, well this happened to me. In November as I found myself half reflecting on what I’d accomplished for the year and looking ahead to see what else I could take on, I felt it. Let’s face it, if you’ve been doing the year right you’re tired come November. That’s not to say we shouldn’t finish the year strong, but there’s a difference between finishing strong and taking on so much that it takes everything in us to simply finish the year.
Why do we do this? The holidays are meant to be a time of family, gifting, gratitude, peace and magic. It’s impossible to enjoy all that’s so blessed about the season if we’re not taking care of ourselves. And let’s be real here, the personal side of things is no joke. We decorate our homes, cut down trees and prop up their pretty little corpses in our living rooms, we shop, we cook, we bake, we eat, we wrap, we sing and try to make our kids look presentable for the millions of celebrations. The personal side is a whole new business in and of itself!
So this year as I found myself in a state of over-tired delusion contemplating what else I could add I did something I’ve never done before. I stopped and before moving forward, I prayed. I paused, I asked for guidance and then (wait for it…) I didn’t move forward until I received an answer.
And then it came, very very clearly…prioritize ‘peace’ as you would a business objective.
That was it. Don’t take on more. Continue with what’s already on your plate, finish the year and find peace. So I did. I had to tell some people in my life that I wasn’t going to move forward with some projects I said I would and projects I’m really damn excited about! I felt a little embarrassed. I felt a little weak. I wanted to be stronger than that but the message was clear.
And it’s been the best decision I’ve made in a long time.
I’m not saying our holidays have been perfect but I truly cannot imagine what they would have been like had I taken on what I was contemplating. I made peace the goal and while it’s not something you attain and then can forget about, I continue working at it daily. It’s my holiday business objective. Weird but it works.
So as you head into the holidays I pray you find peace too. I want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and happy holidays. You won’t find me here or on Instagram or Facebook or any other social platform when the day arrives because this year I won’t need to escape. This year I’m bringing a happy, healthy, peace-filled self into this magic season and I wish that for all of you. Let’s enjoy this magical season and delight in some much needed rest, we’re gonna need it for 2019!