Holiday Busyness

It is November and the holidays are fast approaching. Planning the Thanksgiving menu, Xmas gift list, and deciding on which activities to say yes or no to. I am starting to feel that pressure; you know the “too much to do” pressure. I know I am not alone in this and I am determined to not let it get to me this year.

Which means, some things have to change. But first, and more importantly is understanding where this feeling is coming from. Is it perhaps from some fear of “doing everything right” which is closely related to that P word – perfectionism? I wonder. I don’t consider myself a perfectionist but I do like to do the best I can at whatever I do. Is this a problem? Perhaps.

When I start to have too many things on my mind so that I feel stressed and pressured, maybe I need to ask myself that question “What would Jesus do?” Would He want me feeling stressed and pressured by a never ending To Do List? I think not. Jesus came to save us from ourselves and our constant feelings on inadequacy by showing us how much He loves us by dying on the cross, right?

There is nothing I can do to be more loved by Him or anyone else for that matter. I think my sons would rather have a healthy calm mom and fewer presents under the tree, than a mother who gets stressed out, don’t you think? Of course, I am not minimizing the fact that there is a lot more to do around the holidays and the brunt of the work does fall on the woman of the house, but being the woman, I need to take charge of what I do and don’t do. And replace the pressure I feel with a sense of peace and serenity, knowing and trusting that God will work everything out just as it is supposed to be.

Next time, I’ll talk about what I am going to change this season and share practical tips on what to do to avoid holiday stress. Until then, keep calm and keep looking up!

Holiday Busyness

It is November and the holidays are fast approaching. Planning the Thanksgiving menu, Xmas gift list, and deciding on which activities to say yes or no to. I am starting to feel that pressure; you know the “too much to do” pressure. I know I am not alone in this and I am determined to not let it get to me this year.

Which means, some things have to change. But first, and more importantly is understanding where this feeling is coming from. Is it perhaps from some fear of “doing everything right” which is closely related to that P word – perfectionism? I wonder. I don’t consider myself a perfectionist but I do like to do the best I can at whatever I do. Is this a problem? Perhaps.

When I start to have too many things on my mind so that I feel stressed and pressured, maybe I need to ask myself that question “What would Jesus do?” Would He want me feeling stressed and pressured by a never ending To Do List? I think not. Jesus came to save us from ourselves and our constant feelings on inadequacy by showing us how much He loves us by dying on the cross, right?

There is nothing I can do to be more loved by Him or anyone else for that matter. I think my sons would rather have a healthy calm mom and fewer presents under the tree, than a mother who gets stressed out, don’t you think? Of course, I am not minimizing the fact that there is a lot more to do around the holidays and the brunt of the work does fall on the woman of the house, but being the woman, I need to take charge of what I do and don’t do. And replace the pressure I feel with a sense of peace and serenity, knowing and trusting that God will work everything out just as it is supposed to be.

Next time, I’ll talk about what I am going to change this season and share practical tips on what to do to avoid holiday stress. Until then, keep calm and keep looking up!

Tyranny of Should

Are you feeling pressured today? Too much to do and not enough time or energy to do it all?

For many years of my life, I felt this way. As a single-parent, I needed to be very responsible, obediently doing what I needed to do, disciplining myself to do things when I didn’t “feel” like it, and following the rules.

As a single parent, I didn’t have the luxury of time or feeling “in the mood” to take care of all the responsibilities of raising two children single-handedly while working full-time at a demanding career and taking care of a home and a car. There was always something that needed to be done, and it mattered very little if I was tired, the weather was bad, or I didn’t feel like it. I’ve always lived by the old adage “Don’t put off till tomorrow what you can do today.”

Now that my children are grown and out of the house, I am seeing that not everyone has this approach to life.

As I contemplate what it means to live well, I’ve realized that being content means not having expectations of others, but also not having such demanding expectations of myself. What am I trying to prove? Nothing!

Now I am not advocating a lazy, do nothing approach to life. We are called to be responsible for ourselves so that we will not be a burden to others. Life is very busy for most of us. All I am saying is that for me at this stage in my life, I think it’s time to take a more relaxed approach and stop pressuring myself needlessly. The house will get cleaned, the bills will get paid, and I will go to the gym and exercise. I know this because I have developed disciplined habits over the years. So why do I get anxious when things start to pile up? Eventually, everything gets done. As it says in the book of Ecclesiastes, “there is a time and a place for everything under the sun.”

Where are you today? Are the pressures of life caving in on you?

Today, I will be content with myself and others. I will accept what the day brings me and not pressure myself or others. I will do what I have to do when I feel it is the right time to do it and trust that all will be taken care of in due time. How about you, beloved?

Tyranny of Should

Are you feeling pressured today? Too much to do and not enough time or energy to do it all?

For many years of my life, I felt this way. As a single-parent, I needed to be very responsible, obediently doing what I needed to do, disciplining myself to do things when I didn’t “feel” like it, and following the rules.

As a single parent, I didn’t have the luxury of time or feeling “in the mood” to take care of all the responsibilities of raising two children single-handedly while working full-time at a demanding career and taking care of a home and a car. There was always something that needed to be done, and it mattered very little if I was tired, the weather was bad, or I didn’t feel like it. I’ve always lived by the old adage “Don’t put off till tomorrow what you can do today.”

Now that my children are grown and out of the house, I am seeing that not everyone has this approach to life.

As I contemplate what it means to live well, I’ve realized that being content means not having expectations of others, but also not having such demanding expectations of myself. What am I trying to prove? Nothing!

Now I am not advocating a lazy, do nothing approach to life. We are called to be responsible for ourselves so that we will not be a burden to others. Life is very busy for most of us. All I am saying is that for me at this stage in my life, I think it’s time to take a more relaxed approach and stop pressuring myself needlessly. The house will get cleaned, the bills will get paid, and I will go to the gym and exercise. I know this because I have developed disciplined habits over the years. So why do I get anxious when things start to pile up? Eventually, everything gets done. As it says in the book of Ecclesiastes, “there is a time and a place for everything under the sun.”

Where are you today? Are the pressures of life caving in on you?

Today, I will be content with myself and others. I will accept what the day brings me and not pressure myself or others. I will do what I have to do when I feel it is the right time to do it and trust that all will be taken care of in due time. How about you, beloved?