Be Excited, Not Stressed

The Holiday Season is nearly here — that most wonderful time of year.  I am not being sarcastic or sardonic here.  I truly love the holidays. I love that people feel differently, act differently, and even look different for a whole month or so regardless of how artificial a construct it is.  A number of folk in my Instagram feed already have trees and decorations glowing and shining in their perfect-social-media-feed-ready homes.  It’s inspiring and exciting and gives my heart a little jolt.  Now the jolt part is where is gets complicated.  It’s both a jolt of excitement and joy but also one of fear and anxiety.  The holiday season, of course, coincides with the end of the semester (this year it also coincides with the due date for my sabbatical application).  This means that while I want to enjoy down time with family, decorating, choosing gifts, attending parties with friends, cooking lots, and so on, I feel the stress and pressures of work acutely.

So I have set my intention for this holiday season 2016: be excited, not stressed.  Sounds great, right?  The problem being that I haven’t figured out how to achieve it.  Now setting intentions doesn’t necessarily require having the exact path to their attainment in place.  It’s an intention after all.  But it’s me, so without planning I have no idea how anything happens.  And that is where I am stuck:  On the one hand, I feel safety in my usual motto of “planning is best,” and believe firmly that the only successful holiday season is one that I plan the ever-living-crap out of.  But another part of me wonders what it might be like to just let things kind of happen.  Do things as we feel like doing them.  Wander through the holiday season like tourists without a guidebook (Who does that!?!).  As with most things in life the answer probably lies in a balance of the two.  The problem being that once you start planning, it seems to kind of snowball, and like a Jenga tower, if all the pieces aren’t placed just so, then the whole thing is at risk of toppling.  For example, yesterday I started planning December, and all three weekends before Christmas have plans (plus work), and I haven’t even factored in getting the tree!  In fact, I am willing myself right now not to click on iCal and start clicking and color-coding madly….

In the end, I’m just counting on Pandora’s Jazz Holiday Radio to save me and my sanity.  Oh, and the Christmas lights…those make it all worth it.  🙂

Happy start to the holiday season to all!!

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