Thursday, December 31, 2009

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!

I was reading my mom's Woman's World Magazine and came across this gem on page 42. I think it was the current issue; I ripped the page out so can't check it. Sorry for any of you fact checking my blog, lol

Be Good to Yourself!
Feeling like you don't do enough?
You do!
Pushing yourself to do more?
Please don't!
Life isn't only about to-do lists
Every now and then, it should be about wish lists- yours!
What do you want?
What do you need?
Pick something big or small and make it happen.
Everyone deserves to be happy.
Including you!

I like the idea that my New Year's Resolutions can be a WISH LIST instead of a To-Do List.

What's on your list for this year??

Monday, December 28, 2009

Gearing up for New Years

This week between Christmas and New Years is always a big blur to me. And I'm not a drinker.

It is a lot of nit-picky, clean-up stuff from this last year in preparation for a big fresh new DO-OVER of next year. It is kind of like how every Monday is a fresh start for my diet and exercise program (my program that I don't have.. I keep telling myself I'll start it next Monday.. a day that never comes)but NEW YEARS is HUGE! A brand new chance! To do it, get started with my goals. My chance to get organized, my chance to get my act together and really be where I want to be.

So, in preparation, I'll share a few of my 'inspirational' quotes I've got rolling around in my head.

"Tomorrow is fresh, with no mistakes in it."
— L.M. Montgomery (Anne of Green Gables)

"You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
You're on your own. And you know what you know.
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go..."
-Dr. Seuss

"I have heard there are troubles of more than one kind.
Some come from ahead and some come from behind.
But I've bought a big bat. I'm all ready you see.
Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me!"
-Dr. Seuss

You can’t do EVERYTHING. But you can do SOMETHING.
Helen Keller

15 minutes a day to create something beautiful. We can do so much if we just GET STARTED

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Holidays Can Be Tough

How's everyone doing?

I'm kind of in a funk. It's like I only have 2 speeds- either furiously trying to keep up or totally comatose sleeping for hours.

I'm feeling really unbalanced. Frustrated.

I'm not sure the solution. And I'm not trying to bring you all down. Just sayin.

I know this is a tough time of year for so many. There was an excellent article in the Washington Post last Thursday called Facing the Holidays After Heartbreak. While it dealt with families dealing with both loss and separation (such as divorce) I thought there were some excellent suggestions by the author, Tracy Grant. I'm going to just quote parts of it but you can read the whole article here.

"...navigating the holidays can be exhausting... Finding the balance between the old and the new and keeping old traditions alive while creating new memories is the challenge..."

Cynthia Glass, a clinical social worker has these suggestions for starting traditions:

Honor the empty seat. Put together pictures or sayings about the person who is missing.
(This is Emily now- at one workshop I presented a woman told me she sets a place at the table to remember her missing child. One of my favorite suggestions I've ever heard is to have a toast to remember all those family members not at the table with you.)

Create a new tradition, perhaps taking a family walk in the woods. (From Emily: One woman told me her family has started doing a Christmas sunrise picnic at the beach)

Cut back on presents. Shopping can be stressful and overwhelming (Emily: and it is really hard to go out where you will see lots of families with babies or pregnant women. I do a lot of my shopping online to avoid that. I even use a grocery delivery service for groceries if I'm really having a tough time)

Spend time with people who 'get it'. Don't force yourself to be around people who make the holidays harder for you, even if those people are family members. (Emily: yes, yes, totally agree)

Do something spiritual. Not necessarily religious, but something that makes you realize you are part of somthing bigger, something that allows you to connect to art, nature or other people. (Emily: love this)

Realize you aren't alone in needing help. Helping people in a charitable way helps yourself, too. (Emily: I know many people use this opportunity to do donate or do a kindness project in honor of their baby. I've had people tell me they donate to Toys for Tots, food banks, leaving a large tip for a server when going out to eat, making cookies or snacks for the fire house or police station or whatever project speaks to healing your heart.)

The author says that 'sometimes a change of scenery is just what a family needs'. (Emily: I have had people tell me they plan a trip somewhere- the beach, or the mountains. Just someplace different.)

Now, this is me again:
I give you permission to do as much or as little as you can. Ask for help when you need it. Lower your expectations. Cry when you need or want. Take care of yourself. Remember to eat (not just Christmas cookies).

Actually, this is all good advice for me, too.
Hope today is gentle for you.