Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Just One Thing...or Maybe Two

pippalou via Morguefile
Organization and efficiency are wonderful things. But sometimes we need to wave the white flag.

Lists abound in December. It's two days until Christmas, and my lists still have lists.

'Tis the season to be...crazy?

I don't think so.

So I got to thinking. What's the opposite of a to-do list?

Just one thing.

Okay, maybe it's not technically the opposite of a to-do list, but it has been my plan for December, one that has served me well in terms of maintaining my sanity. But with two days remaining until the big day, and traffic slowed to a crawl, it's time to decide where to go from here, both literally and figuratively, especially since there seems so far from here.

And so my "one thing" has morphed into two questions:
  • Is it necessary? 
  • Do I love doing it?
Anything that doesn't meet at least one of those criteria goes to the bottom of the list. I won't dispense with those things entirely (at least not yet), but the likelihood of accomplishing them is greatly reduced. That means that the things that remain on the list are the ones that matter most.

Things can be necessary for a variety of reasons. They may be necessary for practical reasons (toilet paper is necessary), or because they make someone (you or someone else) happy. Any definition of necessary will do, as long as it's true to your spirit of the season. Doing it just because you always have? That's a recipe for stress, especially this late in the season. Better to make a conscious decision that it's not top priority than to not get to it and feel guilty.

As for things we love to do, those are the things that bring us joy, or that Christmas wouldn't be Christmas without. I used to love to bake gazillions of Christmas cookies. While I can't say that's a task I love any more, it wouldn't be Christmas without them. So, while I'll reconsider just how many kinds of Christmas cookies an extended family of less than twenty needs and plan accordingly, I will bake them. Really I will. 

Organization and efficiency are wonderful things. But there's much to be said for enjoying the season.

Merry Christmas, and may all of your celebrations be happy, healthy and peaceful.
See you in January.

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