The upcoming holiday season can be stressful. You might find yourself trying to keep up with holiday traditions that no one even likes, blowing your budget on presents no one appreciates, or attending parties thrown by people you don’t even care about.
That’s why I want you to read The Intentional Family by William J. Doherty. I love this book. Doherty talks about spending time on the things that matter most. He encourages you to sit down with your spouse and kids to find out what they (and you!) care about so you can prioritize your time and money.
For example, when I had this conversation with my husband I found out that he doesn’t really care about or expect much for Father’s Day but he wants his birthday to be a big deal. Good to know! We also admitted to each other that we don’t really enjoy celebrating Valentine’s Day as a couple–It’s always crowded, expensive, and feels fake. We decided to skip going out and getting presents for each other on Valentine’s day so we could go all out for our anniversary, which means more to both of us.
One year I splurged on a local train ride for my kids named after the book, The Polar Express. The next year I didn’t get tickets and I felt guilty because I thought it was a magical and important part of Christmas for my kids. When I asked them about it, they hardly even remembered going and didn’t care about it at all. Good thing, because it’s super expensive. But what really felt great to let go of was the guilt that they were missing out on something they loved.
Ask your family. They might not care about the things you think they care about. This book inspired me to focus on my family. It gave me a framework for evaluating activities and encouraged me to get feedback from the most important supporting characters in all my holiday plans–my actual family.
Read this book before you get buried by the holidays. It will help you make a game plan for celebrations and for life in general so you put effort into things that matter and you let go of the things that don’t. Let me know what you think.
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