The Cold Penguin

expanding the box

NaBloPoMo & The Holiday Season

on November 1, 2013

On November 1st two things begin.  One is NaBloPoMo, or National Blog Posting Month.  It’s a challenge to write a blog post every day for the month of November.

Today I don’t really feel like writing.  I woke up tired having weird dreams of me being in every scenario of each Katherine Heigl movie (aka have a drunken relationship with a guy, then fall for him, he does something stupid to drive me away, and then wins me back).  And the weird thing was I looked like her, but was me.  Go figure!  And the rain that has been plaguing the middle of the country has finally made its way to the East Coast, so we are getting soaked and the dark grey of the sky looms even with every light on in the house.  Add this to my otherwise struggling mood, and we get a not so happy me.  So despite my blahs, blecks and dreads, I’m writing this post.  Thank’s NaBloPoMo!

The second thing that beings on November 1st is the holiday dread.  I already start to stress over preparing and surviving Thanksgiving and Christmas.  The stress runs the gamut from buying presents to scheduling family time to what mood will certain family members be in.  Basically, everything I can’t control, I stress over.


Every year I promise myself holiday stress will not get me down.  I never go in saying I will not have any stress, because that’s impossible.  But I do say I will handle my stress well and stress LESS, resulting in a for the most part happy holiday.  But does that happen?  Nope.  So I figured I needed a system, and not just a goal, to help me through the holiday times with as less stress as possible.

I was inspired by a blog post by The Dreamery.  In this post, the blogger created 5 goals that were not result oriented, but action oriented (i.e. play more basketball, but it doesn’t matter if I win or lose).  I LOVE THIS!  I’m such a goal-oriented person but I always focus on the end results, when really it’s the action that is the important part.

So in an effort to help me survive the holiday season, I am creating 5 action-oriented goals to focus on for the next two months.

Goal 1:  Be active every day, whether it’s hiking, jogging or taking an exercise class.  I’m happier when I have an active energy release.

Goal 2: Take time out every day for self-care.  The term self-care is broad for me.  It can mean getting a massage to relax the knots that are forever in my back, painting my toenails, or just taking more time to do my hair and makeup (which I usually give myself about 5 minutes to do).  Basically, just making sure I’m feeling good and healthy.

self care

Goal 3: Experiment with baking.  I haven’t baked in a while and I love it.  I need to get back to baking.

Goal 4: Dream out loud.  I got this idea from an enlightening moment when reading another blog post.  (You guys are so smart – thank you for helping me out – I love reading other people’s blogs!!)  It talked about having trouble dreaming (i.e. picturing a better life, an exciting adventure, etc.).  I used to have major difficulties with that and would only picture the future very “realistically” (isn’t that a horrible word??).  My realistic future world was pretty much the same as my current day world.  Now I am starting to dream, as you can tell from my blog.

But I have incredible difficulty sharing this with people besides the blogosphere world.  I’m afraid I’ll look like a failure if I don’t “achieve my dreams”; I’m afraid people won’t agree with my dreams; and I’m afraid that if I change my mind, then people will get angry and/or focus too much on me achieving a dream that is no longer a desire.  All in all, I’m afraid if my dreams don’t come true, I’ll end up depressed and perhaps even taking others down with me.

So, what I need to do is #1 – share the above with my loved ones.  And then #2 – share my dreams.  It will be hard, but I need to do it.

Goal 5: Don’t stress over other people’s stress.  This is a typical woman’s issue.  If another person is upset, we are upset.  And sometimes that’s ok.  But other times, it’s not.  Especially when #1 – the other person’s reason for being upset is silly (i.e. they are not getting their way – which happens A LOT around the holidays) or #2 – when it’s detrimental to you to get upset.  So basically, don’t let other people drag me down.

So there’s my list.  The gist of it is just keeping myself balanced and healthy, which I tend to forget to do during the holiday season.

What would your 5 goals be for the holiday season?


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