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Welcome to Mindful Holiday! My intention in creating this series in that you can focus your Holiday season on the things that matter most– your family! Often times, this season can be full of “have to’s” and obligations, but I want to help you fill this time with joy + light!

I want to talk about the “reason for the season.” For every person, this reason is different. My “reason for the season” is to focus on faith + family. I want everything that I am doing + putting time + effort into, to serve one of these 2 things: faith + family.

I challenge you right now, to say what your “reason for the season” is. Say it out loud and then write it down! If there are things you are doing that aren’t contributing to your “reasons,” then I am telling you: ditch them!

I spent a lot of years doing all the things because I thought it’s what made me happy but it turns out the overbooking + overextending caused me grief.

Think about your favorite holiday memories. One of my favorites I have from when I was a little girl, is my Mom reading stories to me. Christmas books that cost her very little, but meant so much to me. I rounded up my favorite Christmas books and linked them for you!

Kids remember the time you spent with them. They will remember the memories where you made them feel loved and special, not the toys you bought of parties you threw. 

Let’s talk about focusing your season!

5 Ways to Focus Your Season: 

  1. Before you commit, check to see where your heart is.
    • Before you commit to all the events, hosting this + that, going to all the parties and being Mrs. Claus– evaluate where your heart is. Make sure you’re doing things because they contribute to your “reason for the season.” We want this month to build up ourselves and our families, not tear them apart or bring contention into your heart + home. Overbooking is a fast track to arguments between Andrew + I every time!
  2. Don’t worry about what others are doing.
    • There is always going to be a family that has more elaborate Holiday plans than you do. Someone is going to have the perfectly decorated Christmas tree. Someone will get a brand new car for Christmas, someone will get a diamond tennis bracelet, but guess what? None. of. this. matters. If you play the comparison game, you will always lose. Remember the Joneses don’t have your life + the people you love in it!
  3. Focus on truly giving
    • Do you ever give a gift out of total obligation? Are you at the store, reluctant to check out you feel like you’re “spending too much on this person?” Newsflash: gifts aren’t mandatory. If you’re buying something out of obligation, don’t! And if you truly feel like you “have to” buy that gift, try to understand why you’re feeling such obligation. If you can, address those feelings and think about why you want to give this gift. 
  4. Set realistic expectations
    • This can be one of the hardest things for me. This idea that my kids are going to quietly sit at my bar, as I hand them freshly baked cookies and they are going to frost them like civilized humans and we are going to sing Christmas carols together– seems reasonable in my mind. BUT, this is the farthest thing from reality. My counter will be covered in frosting, the knives will be licked by my kids (& then used to frost more cookies) and there’s a good chance someone will end up crying. This doesn’t mean that we are going to skip over this tradition, but I can remember the reason that I am doing this tradition with my kids. It’s not to get perfect cookies or for a picture, I am spending time with my children to show my love for them.
  5. Give yourself + others grace
    • By design, this season builds expectations + excitement. Be sure to take time for yourself to refocus and breathe. If others/family pushes their expectations on you, give them grace. Remember to ask for help and that you are capable of saying “no.”  

Remember that being mindful/intentional doesn’t mean giving less or spending less, it’s about adding depth to the season and using your voice. Trust yourself. You know what’s going to add value to your life in this season!

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