I had to unplug to plug the Christmas lights
[MOMPRENEUR] [FAMILY LIFE] [HOLIDAY] [ORGANIZATION] [TIPS]
This year I felt that December arrived and hit me like a big wave on a storm. I felt like my head was covered by water and I couldn’t breathe. While I was in the middle of this battle, I asked for advice, and instead of receiving a lifesaver to float I just got a chain and ball that made me sink faster for a while.
I’ve heard that the Holidays can be stressful for parents, but that had never been my experience. December has been usually a month to relax and get together with family and friends. However, this year everything changed. November and December are the most critical months in the retail calendar, and I started to feel the pressure of being building a business and raising a family at the same time.
Feeling that I was drowning, I look into social media for advice. (Not my smartest moment, I know!). I asked on Instagram: What do working moms do to balance their jobs and still get the holiday spirit? To my surprise, I got a lot of different answers, from turn on music to “drink” a special juice. However, the advice that felt like a ball and chain was: “You have to organize yourself.”
(Deep breath) Are you kidding me?
I proud myself into being organized. I keep a calendar, I have an early morning routine, and I put everything on schedule. On my worst days, I still run a very organized household and family. So you will understand why the organization advice felt like a slap on my face. Was organization the root of my problem? After making the time to think about it, I can tell you: No, organization is not always the answer.
Even though organization has worked wonders into getting me in a productive rhythm and has helped my growth this year, it was not working, and I needed new tools. To find an answer I decided to unplug myself from the world for a couple of days to reconnect with the joy of the season. In my withdrawal I learned that:
- I can do small. As a conscious decision I bought a smaller Christmas tree, I bought fewer presents and decided to buy Santa’s cookies instead of baking them myself. I have to pick my battles and compromise in a smaller version of what it used to be.
- I can say no. I don’t want to miss anything, I want to be everywhere with everybody, but the reality is that it is the recipe to feel overwhelmed. I do not enjoy to have more than one gathering a day, so I have to miss the other three invitations that arrive after the first one.
- I can forgive myself. I tend to believe that I am what I do, so in this doing less and compromising, I started to feel like I was failing my family and my traditions. The truth is that that belief is only in my head and if I really want to growth I have to let go this way of thinking.
Sounds easy, or even common sense, but in this world full of noise and hyper-connection took me isolation to find my way back to my core and inner peace. I feel like I am floating on eggnog and ready to kiss under the mistletoe!
What about you Mom, are you on the holiday spirit already?
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Picture by @laurabernalphotography