Are you all set?  What are your plans?

How many times will be asked these questions over the next few weeks? I was asked if I was all set for Christmas myself during the past week and immediate started to focus on the shopping list for gifts, the plans for cleaning, for decorating, the invites and appointments that need to be arranged, the sleeping arrangements for friends and family travelling home for Christmas, the menu for Christmas day, closing out the business for 2018, planning for 2019, etc., etc., etc. So many things to do.

But then I stopped to think; what ARE my plans for Christmas? does it look like I’m just planning do all those tasks and when it comes Christmas Day, I simply collapse that evening from exhaustion?  Who or What am I doing it for?  Is this what I really want?  Is this how I want to spend Christmas?

When I spend just a few minutes thinking about it and ask myself a few key questions I realise I want to enjoy Christmas, I want to make memories with my children, family and friends.  I want to stay present over the holiday season, I want to soak up the atmosphere of love, laughter and giving.  I want to connect with family, friends and neighbours.  I want to be happy, feel good about myself and I want to be grateful for all that I have.

You might think, sure, we could all say the same thing but the list of jobs need to be completed all the same, and I totally accept that a Fairy with a magic wand is not going to appear and everything will be spotless and full of Christmas cheer with the presents all wrapped under the tree.

However, the choice is ours; Jesus was born in a stable and was Saviour of the World!  If I want to have quality time with the children on Christmas morning, sit and play with toys or build some lego then perhaps the plan is to opt for pre prepped veg for the dinner so I’m we are not peeling potatoes at this time, or a boned and rolled turkey so it’s not the meat that is taking centre stage.  If we breakdown the tasks, check in with our priorities and then make the decision it’s surprising how the small things add up.  Remember, it’s your Christmas too… not just the extended family, not the neighbours, not the in-laws, it’s your Christmas and your ideal Christmas deserves a look in!

What could help to achieve your Christmas wish, just for you.  Perhaps you could book hair / beauty appointments now so you don’t suddenly find yourself in late December without any options, book a Reiki Treatment (#selfcare), line up a babysitter to allow for a night out with your partner, plan a trip to a Christmas market (alone or with good company), accept an invite to a get-together so you are not under pressure to host the party yourself, try some on-line shopping or some local shopping to avoid the chaos or the big cities.  Declutter as much as possible so the task of cleaning feels lessened?  Charity shops are looking for donations all of the time.  Everyone’s situation is different but if you take the time you will find your options.

So, I ask you in this first week of Advent, to identify ‘your Christmas’ and remember if it’s not in line with the flashy Christmas adverts, the 101 party invites or the expensive gifts that is also allowed!  Make peace with your priorities.

My wish for you is that you spend 5 minutes at the end of the day visualising your prefect Christmas and you take baby steps each day to achieve that goal.  Love and Blessings, Máire x