I was looking through posts from previous years about preparing for Christmas, managing time and stress and keeping things in proportion.  This is what I wrote last year and it seems pretty applicable so here it is again:

C – Charity – make time to do something or give something. A lot of little gestures add up to something really helpful.

H – Happy – yes, be happy. Stop and observe – are you enjoying what you are doing? Is it essential? Is it worth it? If your day is not going to be improved dramatically by making
organic-local-and-everything-else-homemade tree decorations then just don’t do it!

R – Rituals – relish in them, teach your children and family about them, make new ones.

I – Investment – invest in the time you have together away from your normal routine to learn, talk, do, listen and just be. Build memories.

S – Sport – I talk about exercise and sport with my clients a lot. We all know the benefits and just because we might be taking time off work and living outside our normal routine it doesn’t mean we have to stop taking exercise. Mix it up – do something different. Cricket or football on a freezing beach will burn off a mighty amount of mince pies and build memories or create rituals (see above!) to boot!

T – Time Management – crucial over the next four weeks. Keep your ‘To Do’ lists realistic and keep bringing back your focus when your mind wanders, which it will because there are many more distractions than normal.

M – Mary Berry (or as one of my sons calls her, Merry Berry). Cling to her books as you plan, shop and cook and you’ll be fine!

A – Advent Carols – I prefer these to Christmas Carols every time. That’s not really anything to do with Life Coaching but Advent starts tomorrow and I intend to enjoy them!

S – Share the load.  Start thinking now who you can delegate which jobs to. Because as sure as eggs is eggs, once those Christmas films start rolling out, the volunteers will become very quiet but there’s no need or advantage in you being a slave or a martyr.

And now, a new one:

A – Accept – accept what is possible and impossible and go with the former.

D – Delegate, Delay or Delete – my ongoing key to managing the non-essential things in life that can take over.

V – Volunteer for the unusual, for the new, for the challenging – have you thought about what you would like to aim for next year?

E – Eat Well.  I have learnt so much this year about the importance of age-related food, particularly for women in their 40s and 50s.  Group sessions about that next year?

N – No!  Do you find it hard to say no?  A quick tip is just to work out in your own mind why you want to say no, say that out loud a few times ’til you’re happy with it and off you go.

T- Take Responsibility.  It’s your life and if you need to change something in it, that change needs to come from you.  No-one else will do that for you.