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The Organized Way
Organized & Productive
November & December, 2017
"Paper, Space, Time.
          Organize. Simplify. Energize!"
Give thanks

As the holidays approach, do you feel your stress level ratchet up to new heights? Does the thought of all that cooking, shopping, wrapping, baking, and decorating, in addition to your regular full schedule of work and family obligations send you a bit over the edge? And then, when it's all over, those bills start rolling in in January, causing financial stress and strain! Maybe it's time to look at the holidays differently. Maybe it's time to take a good look at what's important, and what's not. This month, I'm sharing my three favorite tips for a more organized, less stressful holiday season. Read on!


Three Tips for a Less Stressful, More Joyful Holiday Season


1. What's Most Important?

At the holidays, the things we think we have to do and the events we think we have to go to can be overwhelming. Figuring out what's most important and what's most significant is the most important step in keeping the stress at bay. Take the time to sit down with your loved ones and find out what's most significant to them when it comes to holiday traditions. Don't forget to include what brings you joy, too! Often we run ourselves ragged trying to please the people who are most important to us, thinking that our idea of what's important is the same as theirs. Sitting down with your family and loved ones and actually asking them what the most significant traditions and events are for their holidays is crucial to establishing what's important. Often, it's not what we are knocking ourselves out to accomplish! Find out what has meaning to the people with whom you spend the holidays. It's not always what we are killing ourselves to get done. Choose to opt out of what's secondary in honor of what's primary. Get the straight talk from the people who matter, and adjust your priorities for how you're spending your time and money accordingly.

2. Share the Joy!
If you have teenagers in your home, and they can figure out the various vagaries of a cell phone, they can address cards, wrap presents, and empty the dishwasher! In other words, all of the holiday prep doesn't need to rest on your shoulders alone. If there are events and activities that are important to your circle of loved ones, then they can share the joy of the preparation, too. Delegate, divide and conquer, and free yourself from the burden of feeling like you along have to do it all alone.

3. Give Experiences, Not Stuff
Do any of us need more stuff in our lives? Rather than adding to the material things in peoples' lives, when it comes to gift giving, consider gifting an experience instead of stuff.  Study after study has shown that people remember the things that they do long after things that they possess. Contribute to the quality of the lives of the people for whom you care enough to give a gift. Don't add more physical possessions to their lives and spaces. Make a donation to a cause that's close to their hearts. Give them an experience that they won't forget. Nourish them with food, drink, enlightenment, knowledge, or pleasure. Give them the gift of your time and attention. (Grandparents - take notice!) Give them something that can be consumed, and that doesn't leave a "clutter footprint" in their space. Rather than add more stuff to their lives, add joy. If you're struggling with inspiration, take a look at some of the ideas here, in my "Think Outside the Box" resource. It's just a partial list of causes, experiences, and clutter-free gifts that may bring joy to the people you buy gifts for at the holidays. Make memories, not piles!
I wish you all a holiday season filled with love, joy, peace, and gratitude for the blessings that life has brought you.

"Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow."     Melody Beattie

Upcoming Events
"Ask the Organizer"
Brown University
(faculty & staff)
January 31, 2018
12:30 - 1:30 PM
Providence, RI

(faculty & staff)
April 5 & April 11, 2018
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Lisa S. Griffith
In order, in joy,
Lisa S. Griffith, CPO®
The Organized Way
Certified Professional Organizer® & Productivity Consultant
Phone: (401) 289-0042
E-mail: lisa@organizedway.com
Website: www.organizedway.com
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