It’s the most wonderful time of the year
With the kids jingle belling
And everyone telling you be of good cheer
It’s the most wonderful time of the year
— Edward Pola and George Wyle
No, really. It IS the most wonderful time of year! There you are hosting the parties, welcoming spontaneous visits from friends, and – if you are lucky –spending lots of time with your loved ones. Alas, amid all the family and celebration, in creeps the extra stress that comes with all the added work you must do during this time. Your task list grows, the invites pile up, and staying balanced becomes harder and harder. Well, suit up, sisters! It’s time to channel our inner ninja-warriors, stand tall, and face this season head-on!
Holy holi-daze, batwoman, here we go! By applying these five strategies into your day to day activities - you will feel your stress begin to lighten up and you may even find yourself – dare I say it? – enjoying this season of hustle and bustle.
#1 — Let it Be, Let it Be. We all need a piece of quiet in every day. Take some time for you; carve it out with force, if you must. Do you have a favorite way to find quiet? Prayer, meditation, or just pausing in the shopping mall parking lot and staring out the car window are all ways to give yourself a moment to reconnect with yourself. Being aware of your breathing for 5-10 minutes a day, will help calm the stress. Try saying these things to yourself in those minutes:
I am at peace | I am enough | I will have a positive day | I am grateful
Will you take that quiet time for yourself?
#2 — Work it, Girl. When days get busier because of the season, it’s easy to negotiate away your exercise so that you can get more tasks done. Don’t. To make it easier to show up to the gym, schedule workout times in your calendar as if they’re real appointments that you can’t miss. Be specific, and plan accordingly.
Are you going to walk the stairs at work over your lunch hour? Or stop by the gym on your way home?
Great idea! Make sure you pack your gym clothes the night before so you are ready to hit it after work.
Do you need a buddy to help keep you inspired?
Commit to a weekly neighborhood walk with your friend.
No time to hit the gym?
Stream a yoga YouTube video and practice in the morning. Here’s a refreshing morning sequence.
Or download an app on your phone, these are two I have:
Make your physical health a priority – especially during these busy times. You will feel better, and more in control of the season. Plus, you will burn some of those holiday-goodies calories and release endorphins to lift the stress!
How will you incorporate exercise into your life this season?
#3 — Break-it Up Baby! Your to-do list can feel overwhelming. Look at your tasks and think about ways of breaking the big ones into more achievable chunks. From gift shopping to planning the family dinner, to getting your home ready for guests. Break ‘em up. Ask yourself, “What is a small task I can do today to meet my goals of being prepared and peaceful?” Perhaps while you’re doing the laundry on Sunday, you can also get the guest sheets and towels ready for Aunt Betty and Uncle Charlie’s Christmas visit. The next time you’re at the grocery store, spend 10 extra minutes gathering the items you need for the holiday dinner.
Bonus Science Gift! → As you check-off each task on your list, the reward center in your brain lights up and releases dopamine, which lifts your spirits.
What tasks will you break-up into do-able chunks this week?
#4 — Just Say No! This one is a particularly hard one for me. I challenge you to pick at least one added activity or responsibility and say no. Go ahead- I dare you! Seriously, you need boundaries on your time, so you have energy for living your best self. Beware of overscheduling. It’s OK if you can’t make every event you’re invited to. It’s OK to spend an evening relaxing at home so you can re-charge and hit the next day refreshed. Give yourself permission to say no, and take care of yourself instead.
What will you say no to this month?
#5 — Just Say Yes! Yes, to activities that bring you joy, yes, to more laughter, yes, to more hugs with someone you love. Too often during busy times we forget to do the things that make us smile. Breathe in the cold crisp air, listen to music you love, really taste the nummy dish you just cooked, and take in the festive lights of the season.
What will you say yes to this month?
Remember, my friends, there are only 24 hours in each day. Setting boundaries and prioritizing might feel scary, but no matter what - the next day will still dawn, regardless of what we do or don’t do today. If we can make it through each day with a saner, clearer way to enjoy our time on this earth – then that’s all the better, right? It IS the most wonderful time of the year – BE HERE.
I’m rooting for you, girlfriend.
Martinis & Menopause Update: Speaking of managing expectations, I’m discovering that the process of writing and publishing a book takes a lot longer than I thought it would. The editing, the design, the layout, the marketing strategy – it’s enough to make my head spin. But it is close, dear readers! Even though we didn’t meet our goal for a Fall 2017 launch, we are looking to be published in the first quarter of 2018! This journey has really forced me to walk my talk. Lots of deep breaths and accepting life on life’s terms, right?
It will be worth the wait, I promise. I’m so proud of what it’s becoming. You’re going to love it too!
The good news is that the new year will bring more parties! I’m busy as we speak planning a book tour! So for those of you living in cities around the Northwest – I may be coming to a bookstore near you - stay tuned for the soirée launch party dates in January and February and book tour notices soon after.
COMING NEXT MONTH—How to dress our Menopausal Bods and Look Fabulous! (With Guest Blogger – Debra Herring)
Happy New Year! We start the new year off with fashion tips! Women from all over have asked me to talk about how to continue looking our best as our bodies change.I have asked my dear friend, Debra Herring who owns Debra Herring Studio, a top fashion boutique in Salem, OR, to guest blog with me. We will talk about some super ideas on working with clothes to continue to look our best!
Don’t miss this one, folks!
My husband Ron and I enjoying our Thanksgiving at the Oregon Coast!
I hope you have a happy December, friends.
Self-care, the love of friends, and delicious nosh for us all in 2018!
About Kelli: I’m Kelli. I am a menopause survivor, who has catapulted, stumbled, laughed, and cried my way to the other side of perimenopause and menopause. Along the way I’ve learned invaluable tips and resources to live my best self and beat the Hormone Groan! No longer a hormone hostage (at least most days), my goal is to help you live well and with personal power through all the changes we go through in this incredible journey of life!