I know you don’t want to talk about this now but I’ve got the responsibility to make you think, even when you don’t want to.
Let’s be honest here. While it’s definitely “the most wonderful time of the year,” all the things that make Christmas great on one hand also have an unmatched potential tip your life way off-balance.
Those elements include:
- overcrowded houses (everyone home for the holidays),
- over-packed plates (mothers and grandmothers everywhere excited about feeding everyone day and night),
- freezing temperatures (depending on where you live),
- the long-awaited NBA Game Day,
- long-distance travel that limit communication with that special someone.
- Seeing all your favorite friends and just the compelling mood of festivity in the air.
Also, while relaxing a little is beneficial, the Christmas season stretches on for nearly a month (that’s hardly a little)!
How does all the fun, food, family friends, festivities and frigidity (weather) of Christmas affect your life?
Chicken, pork, beef, turkey, lamb, goat (curried), seafood all at one meal! Mountains of cake, and pillows of ice cream – you get my point.
If you HAVE been working out all year, you could lose it all.
If you HAVE NOT been exercising, Christmas will see you packing on some pounds.
Christmas has, for me at least, a drug-like sedentary effect. All I want to do is sleep-in, hang-out and have fun.
The problem is, starting the first week of January – “everything” is due and “Well, it was Christmas” is no excuse.
With such a light vibe in the air, a full house, a constantly running TV set and the unending desire to sleep its hard to find the time, or focus for this (unless you make a real effort). A bit ironic, in Christ-mas right?
What Then Must We Do?
How can we get the most out of Christmas – all the fun, food, family friends and festivities – without losing sight, or control of the things that will continue to matter in our lives when Christmas has ended?
The key: We want to do just enough, to keep the motors running and to make sure that when life restarts in January, we’re still afloat. “Just enough” will vary for each of us but:
1. Keep your deadlines in mind.
This is most important. You need to have a broad appreciation of the time.When in January are your projects, assignments, and so forth due?
2. Set low attainable goals.
You can shift into a low gear without turning off the car.
- Physical: can we agree to not eat ice cream more than once per day?
- Professional: What is the absolute least amount of work that you need to do before January? Absolute minimum?
- Spiritual: Instead of ditching your bible readings out of guilt, how about reading 1 chapter for the day, at any point of the day?
3. Think of somewhere in the house that’s quiet and conducive enough (ahead of time).
Bathroom maybe? The bed room when everyone else is watching TV? For example, to finish writing this blog I had to come into the a bedroom while everyone else was in the kitchen.
4. Think of a time (ahead of time).
Early mornings are the best – but ridiculously hard on vacation. Late nights are great too, but everyone is up late watching TV. Midday is hard for me, because the house is buzzing – plus I have the attention span of a fly.
Essentially – finding time for work on your vacation WILL NEVER BE IDEAL. So just find the next best.
5. Inveigle everybody to agree to a daily work time.
I’ve been trying to get my siblings to agree to a corporate blogging or work time, but my sister (especially!) seems to think TV is more important.
Try it, you may have more luck than I.
6. (If you live in a Christian home) Guilt everybody into having their ‘quiet time.’
“Hey, why are you turning on the TV? Have you even prayed for the morning? Read your bible? Man you are a sinner!”
Once they feel horrible and go off to read their bibles, you can read yours too.
7. Divide your time in a way that seems fair to the fun side of your conscience.
My brain won’t allow me to be unreasonable to myself. So vacation time is fun time. However, If I say to myself:
“Andrew, you can have 20 hours to yourself. 8 to sleep and 12 for fun. The remaining are 4 are for 1) blogging, 2) doing your assignment for January, 3) exercise and 4) maintaining you spiritual health.”
I can’t disagree with a division like this.
8. Don’t go overboard – take the vacation.
Hey, it’s Christmas! Settle down. Spend some time with your family who you haven’t seen in a while. Remember that life is a lot more than what you do for yourself. Enjoy!
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