It’s time for Plan “U” of the Here to the New Year in Good Cheer challenge. Plan “U” urges you not to underestimate the appeal of the ugly sweater. It’s undeniable!
If you’ve got one, it’s time to usher it in with unbridled enthusiasm. Understanding this fashion trend is not important. Unraveling the mystery is unnecessary.
Wearing Santa underwear or elf pajamas usually falls under the ugly sweater umbrella. But have no fear, upgrading to ugly sweater apparel does not undermine your authority. On the contrary, it unquestionably upholds it as it unifies us by unleashing and acknowledging a kind of universal dorkiness in all of us.
When you dare to be vulnerable or silly or uncharacteristically unconcerned, you uncover the truth that it’s what’s underneath the ugly sweater that counts. I’m guessing for most of us, that’s ultimately a uniquely loving heart and an utterly amazing soul.
Use the hashtag #midlifemacgyver to send me photo of your ugly sweater on Instagram or leave me a comment below describing your ugly sweaters or other apparel and the adventures they uncork.
P.S. If wearing an ugly sweater leads to your undoing, then make an ugly sweater cake. The possibilities are unending!
Skipping to the front line of the Here to the New Year in Good Cheer challenge is the letter “S”, stacking one stone upon another in seasonal style.
There are several “s” words and ideas that strive to serve you. I could shower you with strategies that leave you staggering with a sprawling spread of spirited suggestions, but sticking to something more subtle suits us better.
You don’t need a series of solutions to get through the day. All that scheming, scripting, scouting, and scheduling may sacrifice your sanity. Where’s the satisfaction in that?
So without further speculating I shall spill the beans and sow the seeds of what I hope will be a shared sentiment.
Slowly succumb to the sights and sounds of your sacred space. If you can’t physically be there, go there in your mind. Soften your sharp edges. Seize the opportunity to shimmy, shake, shine, shout, or seek shelter in this place sanctioned solely for the spectacular surrendering of your stress.
It may seem silly or sound self-indulgent and you may be tempted to shrug it off. Do it anyway. It will soothe your soul, sweet pea. Splurge. Savor. Soak it up.
You deserve some serious stress relief. And I’m here to see that you shift your sights slightly sideways so you might be seduced by a shameless sashay into a silent night – or seconds if that’s all you can sequester – to sleep, shop, or shovel snow in heavenly peace.
Score some stickers or snag a sassy Resolve to Evolve mini journal by sharing your “S” stories in the comments below. I never sell the information on my list so your secrets and your emails are safe with me.
P.S. Here’s a bonus book recommendation for Plan “S”. Start With Why from Simon Sinek. If you prefer watching TED talks to books, catch his sensational talk here. (Thanks, Tom, for sending the book to me in the (saint) nick of time for Plan “S”.)
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Plan “R” is ready to report in for duty in the Here to the New Year in Good Cheer challenge.
Although there are many “R” words in the running for today’s top tip like relax, rejuvenate, roam, radiate, read, renew, receive, reveal, respect, restore, represent, reflect, reign, and shake-rattle-and-roll, one of the revolutionary principles I like to coach people on is resolving to evolve.
Although I have written Reasonably Radical Resolutions to Redefine Your Reality in response to regular resolutions that tend to last as long Rocky Road ice-cream on a ridiculously hot day, resolving to evolve means you repeatedly return to the place where you get to rewrite, re-do, or reinvent yourself as a result of your most recent reach for something outside your comfort zone.
This quote by Rumi sums it up.
“Respond to every call that excites your spirit.”
The reward for risking everything is that you reveal who you really are and this reminds you of what is possible for you.
Instead of removing yourself from any chance encounter with a roly-poly bearded guy and his flying reindeer, see if you can recapture a bit of the Christmas magic by reclaiming your own superpowers and rising to the challenge of realizing your potential.
I know you may resist and possibly resent me for requesting this of you at this time of year, but I want you to ride this year out on a wave of remarkable moments made possible by your commitment to reigniting your rousing curiosity and rejoicing with the totally righteous dudes and dudettes who recognize your rebellion as your resurrection into right livelihood or reassurance that you’re already rollicking along the right track with no regrets.
And one more thing.
Release the need to ricochet or rush around. It will rob you of any peace of mind you may have recovered while reciting riddles in a padded room. Rely on your own rhythm to move at the pace of grace this holiday season.
What rings true for you? Report in and recall your reasons why you rock and your Plan “R” rules below in the comments.
Right on. Or write on, as I like to say.
P.S. I almost forgot… more Good Cheer here! Remember I told you there would be goodies? Well, I’ve got goodies galore!
If you would like Resolve to Evolve or Here to the New Year in Good Cheer stickers to put on packages or love letters, or a mini Resolve to Evolve journal, respond in the comments below. Please leave your contact info below so I know where to ship your goodies.
It’s my way of rewarding you for reading and responding. (And don’t worry, your privacy is a big deal to me. I don’t let anyone have access to the information you share with me.)
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It’s letter “Q” quietly makes its debut in today’s plan to get from Here to the New Year in Good Cheer.
Before Midlife Macgyver, there was the Quirky Quill where I explored the quandaries that quite often confused and confounded me. I thought it might quench my thirst for the quantum leap of consciousness required to quadruple the answers available to me.
But I discovered that answers are overrated.
It’s the questions that keep things interesting. One of the best ways to live an adventurous life is to constantly query the universe.
The quantity and quality of our questions determine the quality of our lives. You can quote me on that.
We may offer a quick quip from our queue of credible answers, but the questions that we keep quarantined that cause us to quiver and quake are what our true quest is about. When we get quiet enough to hear the quickening of our pulse, we cannot quell the call to adventure.
If you are quarreling, quibbling, or quacking like an angry duck, question what’s making you crazy. Quit pretending your quest doesn’t matter. And then let’s start to get clear about where that quest might be calling you in the New Year. (Stay tuned for specific tools on how to do that at the end of this challenge.)
As I was mentioning to Bob how aware I’ve become of all the letters in the alphabet since we started this challenge, his suggestion was to quit.
Not the whole challenge, of course, but my self-imposed rule of using as many letters from the plan as possible in the post. He figured if I could get through Q, I could get through any letter. And since I don’t normally write or talk in alliteration, he was never quite sure what I was trying to say from day to day.
For the remaining Plans R to Z, I’m going with the less is more approach. Instead of sharing all the words I can think of that start with the letter of the day, I’ll share the most meaningful ones.
This brings me to today’s tip, which if it’s the only one you implement, could save your sanity over the holidays – or any day for that matter.
Question what doesn’t work and quit doing it. Stage your own quiet riot. And then get on with doing what you need to do and create something you love in an even more interesting way.
What do you need to question, quit, or change up in order to get a better result? Plan Q is all about not getting caught in the quicksand of convention or business as usual and finding what works for you. It’s the part of my Read It & Leap! process I call course correction.
I’d love to hear what you are questioning these days in the comments below.
It’s the Here to the New Year in Good Cheer challenge and today “P” pitches its plan. You might possibly presume for a prolific person like Penny Plautz from Prophetstown, Plan “P” is probably my preferred plan. It packs a powerful punch and promises to pour a plethora of positivity into our peace producing project.
So many words beginning with the letter P pop into this paragraph and prompt me to play with a preponderance of profoundly pleasurable ideas that promote good cheer. It’s perplexing to pick one from the predominant pool of prized philosophies.
Although I pondered plunging ahead with poetry, prevailing wisdom prods me to publish something that may be perceived as practical yet profoundly perfect.
So today I present you with this plan.
Practice being present.Your presence is the best present you can give. Or, as I like to say, the magic of Christmas isn’t the presents, it’s being present for the magic.
I poked around on Canva and created this design for you. Permit me provide you with personal proclamations you can print out and post where your peeps and pals can put them into practice.
Here’s another positive prescription for today.
Pamper yourself with a parade of possibilities for pursuing your passion – from protesting the need to punish yourself for presumed imperfections to pulling off the phenomenal and placing yourself in a priority position. This proves you are preparing to powerfully procure your place as a prosperous player in a promising New Year.
Please leave your comments below and feel free to pen your own “P” plans and share them with the particular planet of prized people who read this blog.
Okay. We’re back with the Here to the New Year in Good Cheer challenge and the plan for today starts with the letter “O”.
As I write this, the steady stream of snow continues to obstruct and obscure all attempts to remove it. Overtaxed and overwhelmed city workers optimize ongoing efforts to overcome this disadvantage, opting to remain optimistic as they operate heavy equipment and implement organized outlines for clearing what appears to the casual observer to be overwhelming amounts of the fluffy white stuff.
Even if the weather outside is frightful, today’s tip is to be open to the outdoors.
You may object or oppose this idea, but hear me out.
Snow days (sick days or whatever the warm weather equivalent might be) offer all kinds of opportunities to overthrow official agendas and orchestrate new world orders that oust the overburdened, overextended, or overzealous plans that originate in a kind of overrated orneriness.
Outwitting, outsmarting, outmaneuvering, or outrunning the regular routine often offsets the outrage or ennui that oozes from an obsessive obedience to ordinary operations.
Occasionally we need the oddly outrageous to overtake our senses. This allows us to get over what we’ve outgrown that overshadows our ability to move upward and onward and opt in to an optimal operating system.
You owe it to yourself to entertain what occupies your attention. Overlooking it or omitting its existence will obligate you to deal with it later.
How do you overhaul or override your over scheduled calendar so you can create some space for something original?
I’d love to hear how you overturn the ordinary and make it extraordinary in the comments below.
PS – Here’s an “O” book recommendation for those of you who enjoy oracle cards and other divinely inspired works – Outrageous Openness by Tosha Silver.
No way! We’ve already narrated our way to Plan “N’ in our Here to the New Year in Good Cheer and nothing can stop us from neglecting our duties now.
The need for novelty necessitates less napping and more noting of nouns and verbs that begin with the letter of the day. Focusing on things of a specific nature nurtures a nuanced notion of creativity not normally noticed by novices or newbies.
But since you are nearly a ninja now at naming a number of basic holiday survival tips, I must be nimble and expose the naked truth in order to nab your attention in a noisy world.
Despite never ending negotiations as to whether you belong on the naughty or nice list, nailing the nickname “Notorious” by nosy neighbor Nigel does nothing to negate your nomination to St. Nick’s newly named Not Quite Sure list.
Here’s a little nugget of advice. A nudge in the right direction is as near as one good deed away. Notice, nourish, and nuzzle up next to any number of noteworthy causes.
When Jack Frost is nipping at your nose, neck, knuckles, and knees, donate hats, scarves, gloves and other necessities to local shelters or schools. The net gain gleaned from giving is often greater than receiving.
Or while nibbling away at Nana’s nutritious nutcracker cake instead of Nelly’s nachos, find out where your local food bank is and feed a family or two.
What needs nestled into the nooks and crannies of normal life might you meet for others in your neighborhood this season?
Give me a nod and share the ways you move up a notch on the Nice List in the comments below. For every like, comment, or sharing of this post with, I’ll donate a dollar in your honor to our local food bank. How’s that for spreading good cheer?
Let’s let “L” lead the way today in our Here to the New Year in Good Cheer challenge.
Yes, there are lots of “L” words lobbying for the lucky lesson of the day, but sometimes less is more. (Especially when I had the luxury of listening to visiting artist, JM James, last night instead of laboring over a longer post.)
So no lecturing from this language lover. I’m limiting myself to eleven lyrically liberating love notes or lullabies to lift you up when your spirits start to lag.
- Listen before you label.
- Lavish with love.
- Linger longer.
- Laughter lightens the load.
- Lose your luggage. (Figuratively, not literally. At least not the lingerie or longjohns!)
- Launch. Leap. Land. Repeat.
- Do what you like. Like what you do.
- Luxuriate in the little things.
- Legitimize your leaps of faith.
- Lean in. Lap up the light, levity, and loveliness.
- Leave a comment below.
It’s Day 6 of the Here to the New Year in Good Cheer challenge. Today’s tension tackling tips focus on the letter “F” and feature five fabulous fingers frolicking and fa-la-la-ing just for the fun of it.
Today is all about freedom, so pick the concept you find most fulfilling, flattering, or fashionable that enables you to forfeit any full-on freak-out during festive gatherings.
If all else fails and frustration sets in, fetch a friend and free yourself from feeling flustered, frazzled, or flummoxed by facilitating a field trip to your family farm. There you may face fascinating adventures from feeding feathered fowl to following finicky felines as they feign indifference toward their favorite food.
To foster more good cheer you may flirt with flower arranging, or if none are to be found, try arranging the furniture instead for an instant feng shui fix.
If all of this seems foolish, I fear you may have forgotten that time is fleeting and we frequently forgo fresh experiences that allow us to flourish because we are afraid to fumble, fall, or fail.
From Here to the New Year, follow your fascination. Even if it seems far-fetched, fearlessly forge ahead and let it frame your future. Flamboyantly fake it until you make it, if you must. Just don’t forsake the inner fire that edges you forward.
I love fan mail so please share your favorite “f” experiences with this fantastic flock of followers in the comments below.
It’s Day 5 of the Here to the New Year in Good Cheer challenge. “E” hopes to electrify and energize you so you are engaged, entertained, and ultimately enriched by reading.
“E” words encapsulate the experiences I enthusiastically endeavor to share with everyone I encounter. From embody to evolve, I envision programs to help expand, explore, and exude the excitement of enriching lives by fully engaging in them.
What word epitomizes today’s tip? As much as I enjoy verbs like empower, embolden, express, evoke, enliven, and emphasize, for this challenge I’m electing to endorse the idea of emerging.
Derek Rydall has an entire education system based on the Law of Emergence. Derek encourages us to achieve our potential by activating the genius already in us, not looking for it elsewhere.
What’s outside may very well enthrall and entice us. But when we embrace the existing excellence inside, it enables us to engineer our own brand of brilliance.
So how might this advice come in handy, especially during the holidays? Well, rather than eating, drinking, or shopping excessively at the first sign of stress, try to ease into the ensuing mental exercise.
Extricate, evacuate, or evict yourself from the situation, if possible. If you can’t escape, breathe slowly and deeply and empty your mind of emotionally charged exchanges. Remind yourself you are equal to the task at hand and able to enjoy what is going on around you as well as within you. Perhaps an epiphany will enlighten you. (And peace will guide the planet. And love will steer the stars.)
What effect do “e” words have on you? Please express them in the comments below. I’m not trying to extort you, but there could be a prize in it for you.
Tomorrow we have the letter “F” to look forward to. See you then.