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Making a List and Checking it Twice

The official beginning of the Christmas season is here! Now that Thanksgiving is behind us, it’s time to focus on the month ahead as we prepare our hearts and homes for Christmas.

This year, our family is hosting a couple of parties in our home. We’ve had these planned for awhile, but now it is time to get down to the details of what we need to do to get ready for these parties.

During the year I often make what I call a “brain dump” list. I take a sheet of paper and write down everything I need or want to do. This helps me to remember some tasks that I only think of when I don’t have time to do them. Then I can go back and review the list each week to see what I can get crossed off that list.

Now that we are in the Christmas season and we have these two parties coming up, I felt that I needed to make a “brain dump” list for each week so that I can ensure I get everything done. You can see my list for this week above. I’ve included tasks such as cleaning specific areas in my home , sending emails, and completing steps in projects I’m working on.

Each morning I look over the list and pick a few things to try to accomplish that day. By having this list handy, I feel that I’m not forgetting to do anything. If I think of something I’ve forgotten, I just add it to my list.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by all that you need to do this holiday season, try these simple steps:

  1. Write down everything that needs to be done. Include emails you need to send, specific cleaning tasks, errands you need to run, or phone calls you need to make.
  2. Prioritize your list. Each morning look over your list and pick the top 3-5 tasks that you know you can get done that day. Another idea would be to look over your list at the beginning of the week and assign each task to a certain day. That way you can group like tasks together and accomplish them more efficiently.
  3. Delegate. Don’t overlook the help that can be found in your family. Assign family members tasks that you know they would be good at doing. There is no need for you to try to do it all yourself.
  4. Relax. Know that everything on your list may not get done, and that’s OK. God did not mean for us to stress during this time of year. We’ve added so many expectations to the holidays that it does become stressful sometimes. If you find yourself becoming overwhelmed, reach for your Bible and read the story of Jesus’ birth in Luke 2. That will help you put the Christmas season in perspective.

I hope you find these tips helpful. And, remember that this is a practice you can do all year to help you stay on top of things.

Happy planning!

Question: How do you keep up with tasks that need to be done during the holidays?

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