The Holidays: A Wife’s Perspective
The first snowfall is an exciting moment. My kids squeal in delight as they run outside with our dog to chase the snowflakes. I smile as I curl up with a blanket and a cup of hot tea by our cozy fire. A perfect moment, which is just that – a moment. The next second, one child is back inside wanting hot chocolate, another yells for a bag to pick up the dog’s mess, and my scattered thoughts realize I haven’t decided what to make for dinner tonight.
As an introvert, wife, and mother of three, my dreams of quiet moments are usually just that – dreams. The to-do list in my head, the anticipation of holiday plans, kids’ practices, gifts that need to be purchased and never-ending homework, blur my mind. If I’m not intentional with my time, my mind gets fogged with anxiety over all the things I need to get done. Paul reminds us in 2 Tim 1:7 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love and of a sound mind.” A reminder, my dear sisters, that when we feel overwhelmed with anxiety or fear of all that’s expected of us, God is there. He has given us His Holy Spirit to help us.
With that promise on our hearts, I’d like to share a few ideas or tips for ways I survive the busyness of the holidays, and honestly, the busyness of life in general as the chaos doesn’t begin and end at Christmas. We just seem to be more attuned to the desire not to be stressed during this time. First, make lists, lots of them, on your phone, on a legal pad, on your computer. Wherever is most convenient for you. We spend a large amount of our brain energy trying to remember what we need to do next. Lists help us see at a glance what we need to do, and when all is written down, we are better able to prioritize what’s more urgent.
Setting alarms or reminders is another practical tip to help with awareness. When working on a project or writing, I use my watch to help know how break down my time into segments while helping to prioritize other items on my list. I’ll spend 30 min or an hour doing one task, then switch to another. I also have alarms for pick up times for my kids so I do not lose track of time.
It is also helpful to consider what type of processor you are during the holiday season. Internal processors may find taking a quick walk outside or a short nap necessary to allow your mind time to think through events. If you’re an external processor, chat with your husband or a family member. Clearing our minds of unnecessary anxiety or stress is important to be able to move on and prepare for the next event. Allowing yourself time to rest is also vital. This one may be the hardest, and yet should be the most sought after. How many Instagram posts or meme’s do you see telling you how you should find time for yourself? So many that we keep scrolling to find out better ideas. The irony of this example is ridiculous, yet the reality of finding true rest, and practicing that rest is difficult.
Next, take a moment right now and write down three things that bring you joy. I’m serious – stop reading, find a piece of paper and write down three things that bring you joy. Looking at the root of that joy and what gives you that pleasure is usually accompanied with peace and rest. I may find rest in a deep conversation with a good friend, or maybe a phone call with my mother, or reading a book to my children. I also may find rest in taking a nap or creating beauty (art or music). Now that you have three ideas, plan a time to do them. Schedule a phone date with a friend during your kid’s naptime or find a corner of your house where you can start and leave an art project unfinished. Be intentional to find rest, using your alarms on your phone to help you rest while not needing to be aware of the time, but also not get too carried away and forget to pick up your kids from school!
Finally, through all the busyness of life, remember to give yourself grace. We are never perfect and we will continue to make mistakes. Pray for God’s strength to help you through.
“God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.” 2 Cor 9:8
When anxiety rises in your mind, rest in the grace of God in busy times. He is our sufficiency. Our well-balanced life is not our sufficiency, our self-care is not our sufficiency, and even our good deeds are not our sufficiency. God is our sufficiency; His grace will abound in us that we may serve Him in every good work. Have a blessed holiday season leaning on His sufficiency.
For Further Information:
The Storybook of Life [ACCFS]
This article taps into a woman’s self-awareness, self-care, and giving our self to Christ.
The Settled Identity Podcast Episodes
In this series of podcast episodes, Amber Miller helps us understand the health that is ours when we place our identity in Christ.
Mom Set Free: Find Relief From the Pressure to Get it All Right
Author: Jeannie Cunnion
Jeannie invites us to journey alongside her as we learn to:
- Lay down what God has not asked us to carry so we can thrive in what He has.
- Embrace our significance in our children’s lives in light of God’s sovereignty.
- Trust God with the children He has entrusted to us.
- Receive God’s grace so we can reflect God’s heart to our kids.
The Worn Out Woman
Authors: Dr. Steve Stephens & Alice Grey