At this time of year, we count our blessings because we have so much, sometimes too much and anticipate getting even more! According to the Cato Institute, Americans of all income levels are much wealthier today than we were only a few decades ago.  All this may have created a case of too much of a good thing in our holiday habits. Do we really need big turkey dinners with nine types of vegetables or are just a few, enough?  Some of us dread the holidays, get overwhelmed with all the demands on our time, our wallets, our cupboards and our homes. We may love being with our families, sharing a glass of cheer or slice of cake and the cozy times around the table, or not. The potential issues can be extremely stressful. Some of us are not blessed with too much food and too much family but still have much for which to be thankful.

Sometimes in the rush to get the gravy and turkey on the table hot, we are not able to truly appreciate all that we have. So before we get caught up in the holiday countdown, let’s think about ways to count our blessings.

  1. To create time alone is the best gift you can give yourself – mental breathing room. This can happen in the car while waiting to pick up the kids, in the morning with your first cup of coffee or at the end of day when all your chores are done. Listening to your own thoughts or waiting for inspiration to download can be greatly enriching.
  2. Create space to move or to be still is another gift to yourself and your family/ friends.  Taking care of the space you live in, gives you the freedom to use it in the way that benefits you the most. If you’re tripping over yesterday’s shoes every time you walk into the house, you’re going to crash.  Clutter is also mentally disturbing, even if it’s unconscious.
  3. Learn to move slower to save time. Rushing makes you forget things and then you make mistakes. Pack your bags for work, travel or school the night before so that you have time to catch your mistakes and omissions. Being prepared, empowers your activities and your day.
  4. Cultivate the ability to focus, without distraction. We may love being with our families, but it’s hard to focus when commotion surrounds you.  This weekend, my cousin was listening to her siblings argue a political point, while she was making a pie.  She got so distracted that she forgot to put in the sugar! She remembered after the fact and before she served dessert. Focus guides the activity and direction of your life.
  5. If you can count your inventory, you’ll be able to see how much you already have.  I have a thing for post-it notes and was ready to snatch a new pack at Staples the last time I was there. Before I got to the register with my pink proclivity however, I remembered that I already had a fresh stash in my closet. Even if something is a great price and seems unique, it’s still too much. Too much is not a benefit; it’s a burden.  If you can’t fit them in your drawer or shelf, you have too many. This idea applies to clothing, pantry items, books, craft and hardware supplies. Too much also applies to outside commitments, if they don’t fit on your calendar. This may apply to collecting recipes, however, I refuse to answer on grounds that may incriminate me!

So, thank you for all you do; we noticed and very much appreciate it. Also when you’re feeling a little pressed in the next 4 weeks, take a breath, count your blessings and exhale.  Happy Organizing!