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What’s Your Holiday Pace?

November '11

On the afternoon of 11/11/11, you would have found me driving to the Cape under a brilliant blue sky. The bright red and yellow leaves of the maples had long departed, so the richer tones featured by the oaks could now emerge. The low sun in the sky burnished their burgundy and brown leaves rendering them with the golden tones of a Vermeer painting. Cranberry bogs completed this gorgeous landscape with their own crimson beauty as I breezed by one after another on the Cape Cod highway. IMG_0222

At that time of year, winter begins to chase the heels of fall and diminishing daylight signals the arrival of the upcoming holiday season. Those of you who have been reading Midlife Discovery for a while now, know that I believe that self-care, or should I say, “superior self-care” is a must-have when you are in the process of reinventing your life. It also becomes paramount for your well-being during the holidays.

Self-care calls for an inward turning. With your ever-increasing holiday and end-of-year “to-do” lists, finding time to tune into what you want in that moment can be a challenge. But as the days shorten, and you feel more and more rushed, I encourage you to pause and take a deep breath, then ask yourself a simple question, “What do I want right now?”

A spa day, a simple balsam candle at night, a long luxurious tub can be wonderful examples of self-care, but only if YOU want them. By tuning into your true momentary desires regularly, you may find yourself surprised by what you may need in that moment. Maybe it’s a quick run, maybe it’s a coffee break, maybe its a stretch, maybe it’s simply switching your work task.

I have found, of late, that a 15 minute reading break nestled in the comfy couch in my sun room surrounded by plants does wonders for my work pace. In ways I don’t really understand, I seem to get more accomplished when I allow myself that kind of break when I feel like it.

Determining your pace is a tricky business. The first step, of course, is to tune into yourself, then determine what you want in that moment.  If you require a quick breather, take it.

“But I have all these things to do; I simply can’t right now.” you may say.

“According to whom?” I will ask in response.

Your body knows what pace is right for you, even when external pressures seem to require a different, (and maybe stressful) one. Your pace is dynamic, ever changing with each day and time of day. Have you ever noticed how some days you’re in the zone and get one task accomplished on top of another easily. And that on other days you feel sluggish and almost contrarian. I say honor the slug. Tune in and see what she wants. Maybe she wants you to water that plant on your desk, or have a cuppa with that new brand of tea you just purchased, or simply to start writing that article, instead of answering your email.

You won’t know until you ask. So why not learn your true pace this holiday season and initiate a new spectrum of supreme self care for yourself. If you do try this experiment, please let me know what happens.

No need to hurry. No need to sparkle. No need to be anybody but oneself.
– Virginia Woolf

Meanwhile, I wish the happiest of holidays to you and yours,
Bonnie

If you’re looking for a special holiday present for a friend, or relative, you might consider purchasing a 30/30 Consult with me. Simply shoot me an email and I’ll tell you how to set this up as a surprise gift certificate to arrive on whatever day you like and scheduled at the recipient’s convenience.

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