This is a favorite time of year for me. If I am lucky I get to Staples to find some cute school supplies to add to my “creativity box” before they are all gone.
It is a time of year to renew one’s mission in life, to take stock, be grateful and to dream for the future. I have learned over the years that if I have a dream, to write it down, create vision boards and then to plan for them.
I’ve read several recent articles about the ideal holiday and how to sustain the post-vacation glow. An ideal holiday is eight days long which allows people to not only get relaxing clarity about what is important, but also to develop a new vision, a new priority and a new perspective. Look for the patterns of your ideal holiday and try to bring them into your day to day life and your weekly planning sessions.
Step One: Identify the seven major roles you play in your life. Draw seven circles on a 12×12 card stock and name each circle. One of the circles, according to Steven Covey, Sharpen the Saw, includes weekly goals for physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health. Four circles are usually entitled: Work, Spouse, Family, and Friends. The other two may be beauty/creativity or travel; some other position you have in your life to which you need to pay closer attention.
Step Two: In each category write down your goals for the next seven days and you may even choose to make several 12×12 to write down goals for three, six and 12 months.
Step Three: Revisit your weekly 12X12 making a new one each week, and taking some baby steps towards your three, six and 12 month goals.
Step Four: Include your spouse in some of your sessions to plan for dates, holidays and projects around the house (Call the office for a free copy of my visual handout).
Now reflect on your last fun, relaxing, rejuvenating holiday and what did you love to do that you can bring into your life more regularly? For me it is reading historical novels. So instead of watching TV, playing video games or getting lost in the internet, retiring early to read on my e-reader (not a tablet) is extremely enjoyable.
Coloring for adults is all the rage these days. Instead of waiting for a child to color with, do it on your own while listening to some relaxing music.
It is very “parasympathetic,” i.e., relaxing to your stressed adrenal glands, to do both of these activities.
Other activities that you might have done while on holidays were long walks on the beach, or just walking everywhere; playing card games with friends and family, and cooking and eating together. Hopefully you were unplugged during your holiday, giving your sympathetic nervous system a chance to rest from electromagnetic frequencies.
If you can’t get to these quiet activities on a daily basis I recommend creating your own “Sunday morning service time” if you don’t already go to church. Set aside two to four uninterrupted hours where you are not disturbed by anything.
What are you passionate about? Most people when asked will not have an immediate answer. Use the Artist’s Way work book series written by Julia Cameron, to get you started on your creative journey.
Starting with one new activity per week you may find that you can build upon this. In this world of “stressful sympathetic over drive” activities it is important to give the parasympathetic nervous system a chance to become refreshed, renewed and recharged!