A few weeks before Thanksgiving until Christmas are my favorite time of year. I get to start wearing sweaters and boots and if I’m lucky, even coats and hats and scarves on occasion. Smells of holiday are in the air, family come to visit, there are traditions to continue and lots of fun things to add to our fun list… There’s cooking baking and crafts to make and concerts to attend….
But sometimes it can all be a bit too much.
And sometimes, I am just having to let it go and say no. I’m sure there will be things that don’t get checked off on our fun list this year. Things that we won’t make the time to do. I’m not sure if it’s the cancer or just getting older, but the more time goes on, the more I feel the need to live more simply.
I read two books this past year that are helping me make better choices, Becoming a Woman of Simplicity and The Best Yes: Making Wise Decisions in the Midst of Endless Demands. (These make great Christmas gifts, especially for a woman who is requiring pot after pot of coffee to get through her day. :))
Here’s one of my favorite quotes from Cynthia Heald, “On a daily basis the good things – not the sordid evil things – challenge my goal of becoming a woman of simplicity.” How true is this! And I feel like the holidays often magnify this. There are so many good things to choose to do. jBut if it starts to make your heart beat faster and your inhales and exhales to become more quick and shallow, then it’s not good anymore.
“The decisions you make determine the schedule you keep. The schedule you keep determines the life you live. And how you live your life determines how you spend you soul” (Lysa Terkeurst).
Yes, there are soooooo many good things that we could do this holiday season, but I am saying no to many so I can choose my “best yes” and the “best yes” for our family.
Last year I wrapped 24 of our favorite Christmas books in cute Christmas fabric and the kids got to unwrap one each day. Sounds fun, right?But this year, thinking about wrapping each of those books was making me stress out. So I didn’t do it. And you know what? The kids are still choosing one book a day to read out of our Christmas book basket and they haven’t said one thing about not being able to unwrap it. It probably wouldn’t have taken me that long to do it, but it’s time I wanted to spend doing something else.
So if there are things that are causing you extra stress this holiday season, just let it go. Take a deep breath, say no and choose your best yes.