Welcome to December! A time for decorations galore, snow (for some folks in the U.S.A.), fabulous scarves, and, of course, hot cocoa.

As you prepare to enjoy a delightful month ahead, this is the perfect opportunity to call on that all-important ability to stick to your own version of organizational bliss. Not your co-worker’s or your friend’s or your neighbor’s. Yours! Case in point: I happened to glance at our family’s December calendar a few days ago and noted that there’s not a whole lot of free time on our radar. In addition to work, volunteer activities, and day-to-day errands, there are also holiday parties and concerts, gift shopping adventures, holiday baking plans…you get the picture. To achieve my version of organizational bliss, I know that I need some “down time.” If that concept resonates with your version of organizational bliss, you may wish to join me in doing one, some, or all of the following when planning your December adventures:

1. Underschedule. That may sound like a pipedream during this holiday season, but this is actually achievable if you put a “hold” on a weekend, a day, or an evening and then stick to it. No ands, ifs, or buts! It’s not too late to do this. And underscheduling will guarantee that you have time for quiet and reflection, relaxation, and uninterrupted time for yourself and your immediate family.

2. Choose to express an attitude of gratitude as you go about your December adventures. There’s no need to buy into the thought of pressure and stress that we hear about in the media every holiday season. Choose to enjoy a delightful December by expressing gratitude in all of your activities, abiding by your own version of organizational bliss, and enjoying this holiday season.

3. Create new traditions. This is the perfect opportunity to consider adventures from Decembers past and identify what resonates with your version of organizational bliss at present. Instead of hosting that annual three-course holiday dinner party, would it be better to host an afternoon cookie swap instead? If you make a gingerbread house from scratch every year, is this the year when gingerbread cookies might suffice? Or is this the year that you put holiday lights on your house for the first time? Do what works best for you and your family, and enjoy the process!

4. Pace yourself. This applies to everything from the gift-giving adventures to the party circuit to the number of cookies eaten in a 72-hour period. Recognize that this is probably not the last time that you will ever eat a cookie. This is probably not the last time that you will enjoy egg nog. And this is probably not your only opportunity to see your friends. Take time to enjoy the gatherings and activities of the season, but don’t buy into the suggestion that you have to over-due it to enjoy yourself. Balance is key.

5. Keep in mind the meaning of any holiday(s) you may observe this time of year. It’s easy to get swept up into the latest shopping craze, new recipes, and festive decor or wardrobe ideas that crop up on our radars every December. So if you plan to celebrate one or more holidays this month, you may wish to thoughtfully consider the meaning(s) of the holiday(s), and how you can carry those ideas with you throughout the year.

Wishing you and yours a delightful December. Cheers!

* Image by Dsoons