Give Yourself Permission to Do Less This Holiday

Fair Play author, Eve Rodsky, shares a reminder that you do not have to do it *all*.

Nov 23, 2021

It’s that oh-so-special time of year when you may find yourself taking on more than your fair share of the domestic workload to make ‘this’ the best holiday season ever. On top of everything else you already do on any given day, now add— preparing for next week’s holiday feast and then quickly pivoting towards the December To-Do’s:

Shopping for, buying and wrapping holiday gifts (and sending them on time); addressing holiday cards (and sending them on time!), planning for more holiday meals, hosting in-law visits, attending end-of-year parties (and, ugh, probably some still on Zoom), procuring teacher gifts, perching that dang Elf on the Shelf, digging the decorations out of storage, wrestling with the tree stand… and how am I going to entertain the kids for the two weeks they are off from school?. All of this time-consuming, behind-the-scenes prepping, planning and then, doing, can make the holiday season feel like an endless task, especially for women who believe, often unconsciously, that:

This is a ‘me’ job.

I can save time by doing it myself.

I can do it better and faster.

If I don’t do it, no one will.

A ‘good’ mother does whatever it takes to keep the spirit of magic alive!

Time Out! Save yourself from more stress, eventual burnout, and inevitable resentment for holding yourself to an unreasonable and unfair standard and repeat after me:

I do not have to do it all. I give myself permission to do less.

Just because you’re in the habit of doing it all doesn’t mean you must continue to do it. What if, this year, you made intentional choices about how you want to spend the holiday? Start by considering what is most valuable to you and your family. What do you feel motivated to do because it feels meaningful? If staying up past midnight to knit your children’s names onto their stockings brings you joy, go for it! But, if it doesn’t, put down the yarn and walk away. You can begin to systematically lighten your load by taking things off the banquet table that no longer serve you.

With more available space, you will discover newfound time to focus more on the things you most value and enjoy. Throughout the holiday months, I also carve out time for uninterrupted and sustained attention to the things I personally love—my Unicorn Space!

It just so happens that inspiring and supporting people to find their ‘unicorn spaces’ has become my new unicorn space. What lights me up the most these days is following and witnessing others as they create time to cultivate their special gifts and share them with the world. Over the past year, I’ve met some truly inspirational people who I highlight in my upcoming book, Find Your Unicorn Space: Reclaim Your Creative Life in a Too-Busy World. What I learned while compiling interviews and doing research for this book is that creative self-expression, in its many forms, is not optional. It’s essential for all people, though most of us do need to remind ourselves how (and where) to find it. And that’s what I hope this book will help you do. Give yourself the gift of time this holiday season by first giving yourself permission to do less. Set a boundary, with twinkling lights, and do only what you intentionally choose to do because it’s a true reflection of you.

Love, Eve

Pre-order 2+ copies of Unicorn Space for your and your spiritual friends, enter your order into the form on and get invited to a personal workshop with Eve Rodsky who will help you reclaim more time for what makes you, you.

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