I do December the same way most people who celebrate Christmas do – a rush of preparations combined with extra social events, with a hearty attempt to fit in all of the things that I meant to get done during the rest of the year.
Of course, I also get the bonus of having ADHD so, like Dirk Gently in the photo below, I laugh at the concept of time. I have to put a lot of mental effort into calculating how much time something will take. If I try to just ‘wing it’ with my estimations, I end up trying to cram 50 things into an hour or I give myself so much time to do a task that my brain refuses to get into gear because there is no urgency.
And, as a life coach, I end up observing my own behaviour so I can use it as an example when I am explaining things to clients.
So, over the past few years, I have been making incremental changes in my December plans. I have been trying not to get caught up in the rush and, instead, be conscious of what I am choosing to do each day and how those choices makes me feel.
This year, I have the benefit of data from having made similar types of choices about September.
Previously, I used to just give myself a break in September and not try to add anything new beyond what had to be there (i.e. an arts festival and two kids starting school.) This year, however, I added a short yoga practice and a drawing exercise to my busy September days.
Instead of feeling rushed and resenting the extra tasks, those two things became my personal anchor every day. Most days, I did them first thing. And I found that creating that little space of personal focus early in the day gave me a sense of accomplishment and a sense of peace.
A sense of accomplishment and a sense of peace is exactly what I am looking for in December, too.
So, I’m adopting a similar practice for the month ahead.
Since I know that one good way to add a new habit is to ‘anchor’ it to something you already routinely do, I am going to add a short ‘warm-up’ to my day right after my yoga practice.
And, to stick with the formula from September, I’m going to write or draw on an index card every day, too.
I’ll check in a couple of times in December to let you know how things are going.
PS – I didn’t realize that my post was going to have two themes today but when I want to talk about how time is a slippery concept, Douglas Adams just springs to mind and when I want to talk about a feeling of accomplishment then I am all about stars. 🙂