Well it IS that time of year again, the family holidays.
Eating seems to be the theme and of course visiting with family you either love a bunch or maybe not so much. Also the wonderful mixture of 20 different foods in your stomach at Thanksgiving and or your pocket book screaming from holiday shopping. Never-the-less the family holidays are showing up.
Some of you, I know, would just like to fast forward to New Year's Eve and pop the cork. Others of you just love, love, love the holidays wanting to pull out every last stitch of decorating you can possibly summon up to put everywhere in your homes. To each their own, but the key to getting through the holidays with a chipper and upbeat step is feeling organized, not just being, but feeling organized.
So you may ask what is the difference between feeling and being organized.
Well the answer is simple; "feelings" are feelings,
like overwhelmed, frightened, mad, glad, happy, sad etc....
According to Merriam Webster dictionary ORGANIZED synonyms are
neat, orderly, methodical, regular systematic, systematized, and the
antonyms are disorganized, haphazard, hit-or-mis, immethodical (did not know that was a word), irregular, nonsystematic, patternless, planless, systemless, unstystematic, just to give you an idea. I sum up "being organized" by stating "it is a way of approaching life, with a plan, to have as simple,
easy and fun a life as possible, without a lot of hassle and frustration.
Also being organized is the ability to access your stuff quickly and efficiently.
You don't want to have to go digging through things to find that Thanksgiving Platter, upsetting the apple cart along the way.
So if you think that this little bit of time, until the holidays arrive, does not require
some cleaning, editing of belongings, getting things in order, with some kind of method and or system, you may start to feel irregular, disorganized, overwhelmed and fatigued. You will NOT "FEEL" organized. On the other hand if you live in a bubble of oblivion, go ahead don't plan, don't clean, or cook, and for goodness sake don't get organized. Decide now whether you’re going to have a hit-or-miss holiday season so you can spare yourself the yucky haphazard feelings. Decide where and how you will
celebrate the holidays in just your own special way.
You may decide not to cook and instead purchase the food from a restaurant or market. You can consider going out to a nice restaurant for the holidays, to relatives and or friends. Whatever you decide still takes planning so with just weeks away figure out what really will work for you so that is will be enjoyable. Or you can simply run and you can
hide from the holidays....I give you permission. There is nothing wrong with
dodging all the drama and taking a road trip, traveling, and or hiding under the
covers. It's okay to just ignore the whole season if you choose. Let's face it, certain beliefs
don't celebrate any holidays or special occasions and they are not struck down by lightening.
Remember the two largest triggers for depression, anxiety, mood disorders, addiction and health challenges are FAMILY AND THE HOLIDAYS. Mix them together and it can be a fiasco.
You can either make it a hit or a miss, and it is totally up to you.
For those of you with "ideal" families who mostly get along and cherish
the warmth, magic and loveliness of the holiday spirit you
will want to feel and be organized in some manner or another, whether you are
the host/hostess or the guest. Here are some tips for this season.
Awhile back I wrote an article called Organize Your Relationship (Part1) at http://www.i-deal-lifestyle.com/1/post/2011/10/organize-your-relationship-part-1-by-marla-stone-lifestyle-coach.html
I took some time to write part 2, wanting to give the most important steps I could think of, for having a long lasting,
mutually satisfying and loving relationship, and this is what I came up with to help you.
The secret to a wonderful relationship is R.E.S.P.E.C.T..
When there is RESPECT and a mutual admiration going between couples it just makes
sense to be with each other. Once respect is gone so is the love of being
together. Respect means respect. You don't cross your partner's boundaries.
You nuture autonomy in each other. You are not being bossy, controlling and a know it all.
The best way to know what respect means is to look it up and read about the meaning of the word. Also knowing the antonyms of the word respect is really very helpful.
The next thing is EXCITEMENT. There is nothing worse than having
"coupledum" syndrome, meaning dull and dumb meaningless life has set in to
destroy the sparks and energy that keep the fire of love burning, the torch high
and moving fast. Watching tv night after night, going to the same restaurant time after time,
ordering the same menu item, getting into a groove, thinking your are groovy, having
the same reminscent conversations over and over, having sex in the same position
week after week, never adding new activities into your schedule gets OLD.
Being spontaneous, thinking of ways to surprise your partner, in a good way,
livening things up with new activities and stories about your life, your thoughts,
going on vacation to far out places together, and having something interesting
to talk about make for a better, more eventful relationship. We've all seen
the couples sitting in restaurants eating their food, with blank stares and
absolutely not a word between them. Yikes, don't go there. Keep motivated
to think of new ideas for engaging with your partner in fun and exciting ways.
Next for a relationship to have the ultimate in intimacy is obviously SEX. A sexless
relationship is one without passion, pleasure and could lead not only to mental
and medical health challenges, but emotional and mental torture. Sex
also can be many different things besides intercourse.
It could be sensual touching, masturbation, petting etc.... It's not all about a
wild pony ride, but the aspect of physical intimacy is as important to a
relationship as water to a plant. Anyone who says they can live without sex is
lying. We are sexual beings and even babies masturbate.Get over your barriers
and frigidity and start enjoying the free pleasures of sex together. Check out
the couple who, after a sexless marriage had sex 365 days in a row at http://www.webmd.com/sex-relationships/features/365-nights-of-sex-can-it-strengthen-a-marriage.
My mom always had a funny saying about staying sexually fit..."if you don't use it you lose it".
The next step to having a great relationship is PATIENCE. When
Chaucer wrote in Canterbury Tales 1386, "patience is a virtue" he knew
what he was talking about. Look, a relationship is a bit like a roller coaster,
since humans have what are called, moods. Think of moods like you would think of the weather. Sometimes we are sunny and sometimes we are soggy. I have a friend when asked "how are
you?", answers "fair to partly cloudy". Being upset with your partner, thinking
you will call it quits, and wanting to run away as far as possible does creep
into every individual's mind at times. Knowing that people fluctuate with their
emotions and thoughts and giving your partner a break, taking a deep breath and
seeing how the next day or week pans out, usually will rectify and reunite you
in a new fashion. Being patient enough to see how a relationship grows, sprouts
and blooms is all part of the relationship. Having the insight to know change is
scary but a great path to take while having the calm and fortitude to face it makes
for a relationship with insight and vision.
COMMUNICATION is the key to success for any long lasting relationship. Communicate,
communicate, communicate and you will actually know what is going on between you
and your partner. Otherwise your relationship may be based on false pretenses,
magical thinking (grandiose thoughts that are purely fantasy, not reality) and
loneliness. I have met individuals, when I did couple's counseling, that actually didn't even know their partner's birthday, spontaneously, where they were born or what their partner’s childhood
was like, and these are people that were married a very long time. It was sad
sitting with two uncomfortable strangers. They had never taken the time to
actually have deep and fulfilling conversations. Usually that occurs with people
that have deep intimacy challenges and perhaps suffer from intense introversion.
There is nothing worse than having a relationship between two deeply anxious
introverts, unless it is two deeply disturbed narcissistic extroverts.
Communication always starts with sharing feelings such as hurt, unloved, irritated, uncomfortable, sad, mad, glad, misunderstood etc..... and then you must validate your partner. See
my article on keeping clutter free to learn more about communicating with your
partner at http://www.i-deal-lifestyle.com/1/post/2012/07/is-someones-clutter-getting-in-between-you-and-your-world-marla-stone.html
Finally last but not least is TRUST in you, your partner and the
relationship itself to have the ultimate in partnerships. I would say the most
valuable thing in a relationship is having a trusting relationship with yourself.
If you are not following your own truth, your ideal path, living your ideal
lifestyle, adhering to your own values, but rather lying to yourself, being
unclear about who you are, what you want in life, and not knowing what you
actually value in life, then you are not ready to be truthful, faithful, ideal
or valuable to a partner or partnership. Let's face it, if you value a
monogamous relationship and you are cheating on your partner, look out for a big
kick in the butt and at the very least a dreadful, abhorent existence.
You can only make it your partner's problem for a short period of time before they will
suspect that you are not being who you say you are.
Also if you are unhappy in your career, choice of life goals and or your appearance, and
your partner has to hear you whine about your unhappy self, day in and day out,
trust will break down into disgust instead. If you are not in touch, in tune with
self and can't trust your thoughts, words and actions, then how is your partner
supposed to feel trusting of themselves to be with you.
I really dislike when someone says "trust me". I don't think you EVER give your
trust away, but rather you either feel trusting with others or you don't. If you don't feel a trusting feeling
with your partner first find out if you even trust yourself. If you do realize
you have great faith and trust in self and you still feel distrustful of your
partner then get some clarity about why you are feeling that way. It is okay to
poke and prod about in conversations with your partner to get CLARITY on your
thoughts and feelings. Don't be afraid to communicate your feelings of distrust
with your partner, for fear of losing the relationship, since you are already
in fact losing the relationship if you don't feel trust with the partner.
Finally, if you believe your relationship, is in jeapordy don't hesitate to go
to a life coach, marriage coach and or for couple's counseling.
Don't be the person that says "I don't need to go". Your correct,
you don't "need" to go, you have to "want" to go, if you are
interested in getting back to the path of love.
Look for Part 3 soon!
Marla Stone, MSW, Professional Organizer, Lifestyle Coach, Decor and Feng Shui
Specialist, Public Speaker
call (949) 709-7000 for a free 30 minute phone consultation to find
out more about Self & Space Organization.
Here you will find an array of blog articles about decluttering your home, life and business strategy
Marla is known as the Declutter Your Strategy™ expert. Marla earned her BA in Psychology and a Master's in Social Work and is the founder of