Blog: Organizing for Boomers
The Unlist For The Holidays - Part I
The holidays are staring right at us already. For some it's a grand time of year. They've been shopping for the past 12 months, their family traditions work like clockwork, and they spend their evenings around the hearth of the fireplace singing holiday songs and reading stories the entire month of December, waiting as patiently as tin soldiers for the festivities to begin.
Then there are the rest of us!
Did that opening paragraph make you want to gag and stop reading?
Are you one of those who want to crawl under the covers and wake up about January 8th of the new year, weighing just the perfect weight, with no mess left over from the holidays and all the relative relationships operating at perfect pitch?
Then, perhaps the unlist is just for you.
Here's how it works:
- Grab a large piece of paper-at least 8 ½ x 11-Put a circle in the middle of the center and draw about 10 spokes coming out from the center-like spokes of a wheel.
- Write the name of the major holiday you celebrate in the center (Christmas, Hanukah, New Year's Day). If you are a big celebratory person and have big-time celebrations at more than one holiday, get a separate paper for each holiday.
- Ask yourself what are the major components of this holiday for me? It might be family or it might be friends. Write either of those on one of the spokes or maybe both.
- Is food involved in this holiday for you? Write that word on another spoke.
- How about decorations? Write that on another spoke.
- What about gifts? Put that word on another spoke.
- Religious services?
- Holiday cards? If this is something important to you, make it one of the spokes.
- Holiday outfits ready?-write it down.
- Underneath each category put any subcategories you can think of. For example, under food, draw a line and write a specific meal you want to make, a restaurant you hope to visit.
Step back and look at your To-Do graph. Is it overwhelming? Does it make you want to leave town now and head to some island with an umbrella drink in your hand?
Close your eyes and picture what is really, really important to you and your family this holiday season.
Keep in mind you are trying to fit all of these TO DOs within your already existing, maybe over-scheduled regular life.
Take three deep breaths and revisit the list. What are your priorities for this year's holiday season? Can you let go of some of the activities? What's the worst thing that will happen if you start eliminating some things on this list?
Get out your calendar/planner/PDA and look at your schedule from now until the end of 2007. Is it reasonable to fit all of the To Dos you have just mapped out into your current life/work/family world or are you heading to major crash and burn status long before the ball drops to end the year?
Be bold-Be brave-what can you cross off your list? Where can you get some white space in your calendar-some breathing room? Would the world really stop if you didn't bake all those cookies from scratch with the special recipe from your great-grandmother? What if this year you and your family enjoyed the outdoor decorations on houses while you were driving home, rather than taking a special night to drive around and look at decorations?
Oh, yes, I can hear you saying that our family just loves to do _________(you fill in the blank).
Maybe this year you just don't do it. Doesn't mean you'll never do it again. Might mean it's so important to you that you make sure that special something gets on the calendar for next year. Then next September, get out the To Do Map and start calendaring in that special item so you can really appreciate and enjoy the experience.
Next week we'll talk about what's left on your To Do and some shortcuts to getting them done.
Making Your Space a Special Place…
the R.E.D. team – Reinventing Everyday Designs
posted on: 11/16/2007 12:30:00 PM by Sue Crum
category: Special Populations
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Organizing for Boomers
by Sue Crum
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Sue Crum knows and understands the life of a Baby Boomer all too well. Having served as the filling of an Oreo cookie for many years, she has reinvented herself in San Diego as the owner of The R.E.D. Team, Reinventing Everyday Designs, doing professional organizing, real estate staging, and interior redesign.