Silly Season Joy Tips: Be Authentic and Know Thy Self
How are you feeling about the lead up to Christmas? Are you starting to feel the pressure from a busy social calendar, with an increase in parties and end of year events? Have you heard yourself say ‘I will be glad when December is over’?
At this time of the year, paying attention to what is really important to you, can be a great way to not just survive the silly season, but ensure it is filled with some joy. By remembering what’s important you can say ‘yes’ to friends and activities that really matter, and have the strength to say ‘no’ to other invitations and deadlines.
Focus on the whole picture
Many of us are taught to focus on career, financial and fitness goals. These are important, but only part of the picture. To lead an authentic life, I recommend there are some additional areas that also require your attention. If you allow yourself to focus your time and energy on these areas of your life too, then you will potentially feel a greater sense of happiness and fulfillment (as you are attending to all elements of your life).
1. Professional & Business
2. Personal Relationships (Friends and Family)
3. Recreational (Hobbies and Relaxation)
4. Wellness & Personal Growth
I also believe no single goal category is more important than the other, but some goal categories have the ability to influence our lives more than others.
Let’s look at the career / business goal, for example. Most people are fairly good at ensuring they have a job or that their business is running as successfully as possibly. Unfortunately many people dedicate too much time to their jobs or business and potentially neglect their loved ones and personal relationships.
Sadly for us, in many instances these goals can feel like they conflict. Some of them may change priority over the course of your life.
We need a healthy blend of focusing on and achieving all of these goal areas in our lives to ensure we can be happy, authentic and reach our full potential.
Managing goals at Christmas time
With Christmas just around the corner, your social calendar may be filling up and you may be feeling a little overwhelmed. The trick is to find those goals that complement each other. An example of complementary goals is that in the area of recreation, you may wish to exercise more, but you are also keen to catch up with particular friends more. Ideally you and the friends you’d like to see more of could start walking or playing sport together.
Being authentic essentially is about being the same person in private that you are in your professional life. It is about blending your worlds and accepting that they influence each other.
Be kind to yourself
We all know Christmas can be stressful. It can be expensive, it is busy, and there is added pressure people seem to put on themselves to make it both memorable and magical.
Better Health Victoria has provided the following tip sheet to help reduce anxiety at Christmas time.
Enjoy the Silly Season
I want you to enjoy the next few weeks, not just survive them, so here are our tips on staying authentic and true to yourself during the silly season.
- Understand your stressors. If they relate to a particular person or social situation, have a plan for minimizing their impact
- Consider that there is actually no need to catch up with everybody in your life in the lead up to Christmas. Pare this back to your inner circle and the obligatory school/ work events.
- Have realistic expectations. Christmas doesn’t have to be Martha Stewart/ Pinterest perfect. Something will probably go wrong. Children will not behave perfectly. Try and remember that Christmas is a celebration and not a project.
- Enjoy the moment. Remember that Family time is special and you will not always be together. Even if your family has its quirks, it is uniquely yours and should be cherished.
- Relax. Take some time over the Christmas break to do something that relaxes you. Disconnect from work and electronics and slow down and live in the moment.
I hope you use and find these tips and strategies helpful.
Please share your strategies for surviving the Silly Season and staying authentic in the comments below.
As a storyteller, I help quieter and thoughtful folk communicate better online (and offline). I enjoy the complexity of people and helping others through my coaching, training and online courses.
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