Is your holiday to-do list growing out of proportion? In addition to everything else you normally do, you’ve probably strapped on parties, family gatherings, gift and card giving and some travel. Who has time for all of that? It sounds exhausting!
Here’s an easy tool to help you get through it all while remaining master of your universe.
Simply apply the three B’s to your to-do list. What are they?
Better, Barter or Bag It!
Here’s how it works:
Better it: You have an obligation that you are not looking forward to. How might you make it better? For example, if you’re going to visit the family members that you love, but who drive you crazy, can you limit the length of time you spend with them? Could you stay at a hotel or a friend’s house rather than sleeping over? Hate air travel? Perhaps you can indulge yourself with a fabulous book, movie, or some other entertainment that turns your time into a mini-vacation. What about making that party a potluck instead of doing it all yourself? Brainstorm! There are countless solutions and improvements you can find to make things better.
Barter it: If there are items on your to-do list that you are not good at, or that you don’t enjoy doing, can you trade with someone else? Perhaps you can pay someone to do the dreaded task (the teenager down the block can help hang the outdoor lights) or maybe you can swap with a friend or family member: “I’ll wrap your presents if you put the lights on the tree.”
Bag it: If all else fails and you’re running out of steam, ask yourself, can you eliminate some items altogether? Maybe your holiday cards become New Years cards that get written and mailed on January 1. Or perhaps, you don’t need to host a 12-course meal for 50 people.
The key to all of this is to keep doing the things you love and toss out or reinvent the things that you don’t – especially if they don’t matter as much – or at all. It may feel a little odd at first. You may even disappoint or bewilder a few people in your life when you start to balance self-care with doing it all. But just imagine, if you can de-stress and enjoy your holidays a little more, how worthwhile that could be.
My guess is that your friends and family will enjoy you more too if you are more relaxed. After all, it’s not what you do, but who you show up as - that matters most.