I was talking to a friend one day and she dropped a nugget of wisdom that I continue to revisit. I honestly don’t remember what the exact conversation was about, but she commented that she had low guilt about a situation.
That’s an amazing concept. I mean is that even possible? As mothers, our guilt radar seems to soar to high levels without us even realizing. It’s the constant questioning our minds continue to fire at us. Are we spoiling our kids or being too tough on them? Is the path of education we chose for them the best? Are they involved in too many activities or in the right activities?
Our minds can run us in circles if we aren’t careful.
Then, you pile on the hustle and bustle of the holidays and you have a recipe for disaster in the form of a mom meltdown. So, this holiday season, I’m declaring low guilt in several areas that have caused me anguish in the past.
I don’t like shopping, but I loathe Christmas shopping. The busyness of all the stores, the traffic, the pressure of getting the perfect gift for someone, the cross checking of the gifts for the kids to ensure everyone got something they wanted and on and on and on … no thanks.
This year, I spent a few hours in front a computer, pressed some buttons and completed the shopping without the shopping experience. I even showed some of the items to my kids to ensure it was want they wanted and bought it right in front of them.
Yep, I did that and you know what? I have low guilt about it.
And before you declare a state of emergency that I may have gone over budget with my online shopping, this cash system loving girl made sure the ‘Christmas money’ was in the account, instead of cash in hand before I purchased anything online. Again, low guilt.
I love hearing about cookie swap parties and seeing all the beautiful cookies people make with their kids, but you won’t see any of those cookies coming from this house. We aren’t baking for an entire day. We may whip up one kind of cookies and wrap up our baking experience in less than thirty minutes. And we may just buy some festive baked goods at the store and eat them in our clean kitchen. Low guilt.
As I mentioned before, I detest (is that a strong enough word?) shopping, so it’s no surprise that I will jump in a group gift in a heartbeat. However, this year that’s where it stops. I’m not making something cute or buying a little extra to go along with the group gift. The group gift is it. Low guilt.
This year I won’t be buying gifts for the sake of buying gifts. You know what I’m talking about, when you feel like you need to give something to everyone. Now, if gift giving is your love language, then please continue on, but it turns into an anxious event for me. “Did I forget anyone? Did I buy ‘extra’ gifts?” Before you call me Scrooge, I absolutely will give gifts to my close family and friends and will do something special for our dedicated service people. I mean our mail carrier deserves a special treat for all the boxes he has put on my doorstep. However, these gifts will be simple and store bought. Low guilt.
Let me be clear, Christmas is my favorite time of year, but so many years in the past I have missed it. I have missed the true meaning and value of the season because I have done what I thought was expected of me. In the end, I’ve made myself and my family tired and cranky.
This year I’m choosing to do things differently. I’m subtracting the things that drain me, so I can experience Christmas with the hope and joy that this season is really about. And you guessed it, I will have low guilt about it.
What are you willing to have low guilt about this Christmas season?