So the clock wound back an hour this weekend. For some, it’s an extra hour to sleep and stay warm in bed. This year, I promised myself that I would just get up the extra hour earlier and get a few things done. Coming from a chronic over-sleeper, this basically just means that I’m going to start getting up on time.
I LOVE Autumn. I’m sitting here next to the humidifier, sticking my head directly over it periodically (because “hello skin care”), and kind of wishing my body would adjust and love fall, too. It’s getting dark already, but my soul is alive with the comfort of the season. But another thing my soul is alive with is a little bit of stress for the busy season ahead. After all, it is the most wonder FULL time of the year, and, for someone who requires time alone to recharge after heavy socialization, the notion that I may not get much “me- time” is kind of stressful. So here’s a short PSA- written while I recharge- that it’s important to leave margin in your life, even in the holiday season.
Realistically, that looks different for everyone, but I’ll share some Margin-Building Tools that I’ll be using this season:
1. Keep a calendar. For me, if it’s not on my calendar, it doesn’t exist. Keeping a calendar is a great way to be aware of what’s coming up, which helps to distribute energy. It’s also GREAT for scheduling (and keeping) downtime just like you keep the dinner date with that friend who’s coming into town.
2. Say “No”. I’m learning this SO slowly: you don’t have to be at everything. End of story. Choose wisely, and really take inventory of your energy. If it’s not necessary or a priority, do you really have to go?
3. Keep a Gratitude Note. Seriously, it sounds frilly, I know. Whether it’s in my phone, in a text or in my bullet journal— or out loud in the car, when you’re feeling overwhelmed, sound off with things that have gone RIGHT that day, not matter how small they are. Seriously, some days I say in the car, “The day is almost over, and my dog will be SO happy when I get home” or, “At least this day will be a GREAT story one day.” I might have to get creative, but putting a tiny positive spin on the day can do wonders for a full mind.
4. When you are somewhere, be all there. This one is a big thing that I’m really working on this season. Whether it’s a task, a meeting, a party, a dinner, or a night in with a movie, I’m working to be all there. I’m trying to cut down on phone time and turn up the in-the-moment moments. Being all in one place instead of looking ahead to the next task can make things seem a little less overwhelming. Multitasking isn’t always the best way to do things: A Millennial Key To a Meltdown.
5. Leave Room For Margin. Even if it’s five minutes— even if you have to get up a little earlier to make it happen, make time for yourself. Read a book, take some quiet time, don’t let anyone talk to you before your coffee is empty. Creating that margin for rest in each day, no matter how small that margin gets to be, is key to survival when we face the most socially taxing time of the year.
I love the holidays. I love the sweet time with much of my family and friends. I live for the laughs and the stories. The memories made in the holiday season are so special, and I cherish every moment. However, I’m able to better cherish each moment when I keep my “recharge time” in check.