Article by Dee DeWitt

 

The holidays are a busy and stressful time for most people – with family visits, travel, work, gift shopping.  Not to mention all the many types of events – many of them “command performances” – that happen between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Eve.

 

And we try to stay sane.

 

So … what’s the secret to having a wonderful time during the holidays?  Well, I don’t pretend to have the answer.  If I did I would have bottled and sold it long ago.  

 

What I think may be one answer to having a great holiday and dealing with the additional stress is to stay in the moment as much as possible.  I have been trying to do this.  It’s a work in progress.  And it’s easy to forget when the stress is staring you in the face.

 

This is something I work on all the time, and it’s easy to forget.

 

I think it is also we can all do with a little practice. Try thinking of something that make you happy … makes you smile … makes you feel calm and relaxed.  When you feel yourself getting stressed or overwhelmed, remember the feeling.  Say something to yourself to help you remember that positive feeling.  This is your tool to pull out and use whenever you feel the need.

 

Now try the same thing with whatever you’re doing that adds to your stress during this holiday season – shopping for a gift for a loved one, a company Christmas party, your tenth school Christmas performance you need to attend tonight after work.  Whatever it is, while you’re there try to focus on that one thing to the exclusion of everything else.  Really be in the moment with that thing or that person.

 

Remember what’s most important to you during these holidays.  Family, friends, church, God.  Focus on that during these holidays, and remember that the rest is only noise.

 

“There is nothing sadder in this world than to awake Christmas morning and not be a child.”
-Erma Bombeck

 

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Posted on 23 December, 2009 in Balance, Making the Day Count, Simplify
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Article by Dee DeWitt


Do you feel guilty because you’re not doing enough?  I’m the first to admit that I don’t always remain calm when I don’t get everything done that I planned. Sometimes I get distracted; sometimes unforeseen events happen which get in the way of my ambitions; sometimes I simply tried to take on too much at once.

 

And sometimes I have a hard time not caring about unimportant things. I want the dishes to be clean and the carpets vacuumed … everything neat and tidy.  The problem is things don’t usually work like this.  In fact, they almost never work like this … meaning if I don’t relax I will always be frustrated.

 

The point is there’s always something to be done, always something else that needs to be finished, always some goal needing accomplished … and then we can feel happy (or so we think).  Right?  Of course, there’s only one problem.  Nothing is ever complete.  Not for long, at least.  Soon we remember another task, and the cycle starts all over again.

 

So if that time and place is impossible to reach, we have to stop caring about unimportant things. Read More »

Posted on 29 October, 2009 in Balance, Goals, Simplify
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Article by Judy Mosley


For my family, this year has proved to be a lesson in money management.

 

Through the recession, we made a plan for our money to ensure that our basic needs were met.  Our bills were paid, but we often had to forgo the fun spending to make sure that happened.  Instead, we created our own fun by using our imagination and deciding what we really wanted to do when did get a little extra “play” money.

 

As my husband’s hours increased, so did his paycheck.  And during the first few weeks, we started going out again, and doing a few nice little things for each other.  But we quickly noticed how fast we would run out of “play” money. By the end of the month, we started feeling confused about where our money was even going.

 

We realized that if we wanted to get the best out of our money, we had to be more intentional with it.

 

Whether you have a lot or a little, money is something that everyone must learn how to handle.  If we don’t discover how to use our money to create a more fulfilled life, it will be squandered in little ways, leaving us wondering where it went.

 

Here are a few things that my own family has been learning in the process of handling our own funds. Read More »

Posted on 13 October, 2009 in Finance & Family, Goals, Simplify
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Article By Dee DeWitt

 

Have you ever been asked by someone to something that you really did not have time for?  You said “Yes” when you really wanted to say “No.”  I have.

 

How did you feel afterwards?  Be honest.  Were you a little resentful?  Did it just add to your busy schedule, making you all the more squeezed for time?

 

We all reduce our productivity and efficiency – and ultimately our very happiness – by wavering between two words: “Yes” or “No.”  Many times, we say “Yes” when we mean “No” or say “No” when we should say “Yes.”  Both words a very powerful and have direct impact on our well-being.  Each word needs to be used wisely, judiciously, and with grace, with our own peace and self-respect in mind. Read More »

Posted on 20 July, 2009 in Happiness, Productivity, Simplify
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Article by Dee DeWitt

 

We often rush through tasks, trying to get them done, trying to finish as much as we can each day.  We speed along in our cars to our next destination, rushing to do what we need to do.  Then we leave so we can speed to our next destination.

 

Unfortunately, it’s often not until we approach our final destination that we realize what madness this is.

 

At the end of most days we’re often exhausted and stressed out.  We don’t have time for what’s important to us, for what we really want to be doing, for spending time with loved ones, for doing things we’re passionate about.

 

It doesn’t have to be that way.  It’s possible to live a simpler life.  A life where you enjoy your activities.  A life where you are present in most things you do.  A life where you can be content rather than rushing just to finish things.

 

If this appeals to you, then take a look at some suggestions for living a more peaceful life: Read More »

Posted on 13 July, 2009 in Happiness, Making the Day Count, Simplify
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