Do you find yourself needing a vacation after Christmas vacation? Are you exhausted from all the shopping, running around, buying, wrapping, buying, wrapping, buying, wrapping? Let’s take a look at some simple ways to make this time of year one filled with joy and meaning.

At this time of year we all feel the tug (perhaps bombardment is a better word) from our culture to spend as much as possible. It’s as if we’re not OK if we aren’t practically killing ourselves, running up the national debt, giving to everyone we know. It’s quite likely that with that agenda, any kind of balance goes out the window and you end up depleted and too wiped out to even enjoy giving or receiving. Why not make this the year that you design your own program to honor what really matters to you?

Start by making a list – not of gifts to give, but of what it is you really love about the holidays. The things that bring a smile to your face and give you that warm, fuzzy feeling inside. In order to do even this, take a moment to check in with your heart. Find a quiet place to sit and give your attention to looking within. Remember what from past years has stayed with you as the special moments. Fluff the memories up a bit; enlarge them and the feelings that go with them until you’re saturated with the love and meaning they bring.
Just enjoy this for a while.

When you’ve compiled the list of your favorite things, take a look at what you would need to do to make even half of them happen. What Yes’s and No’s are necessary to manifest the things you love? The beauty of your list is that it reflects the Values that are an important part of your essence. By taking the time to fulfill your list, you are honoring who you are. This natural alignment, bringing your values into line with your actions, is what creates fulfillment. And fulfillment creates joy! Isn’t that what the holidays are supposed to bring?

At this point you may be experiencing the voice of what I call your Gremlin. The Inner Critic that thinks you should keep doing things the way they already are – no changes, thank you. As you prepare to leave some No’s in your wake, this voice can emerge softly or full on, like a hammer over your head. What?! Say no to more gifts? Say no to more enormous parties where you barely know anyone? What? Are you crazy? No one will love me anymore! While this voice can be helpful at times, it never will support change, so be aware of it’s language and short cut it with your own, more authentic voice that says I’m making these choices because I realize what matters the most to me and this isn’t it. I’m designing my version of the holidays to ensure that we experience what’s really important. Delivered like a loving parent, the voice will be reassured and more likely to release its hold over you and your life.

This holiday season you can use these tools to stay committed to your authentic path, the one that allows you to design a True Life. Nothing is more worth the time. Nothing will bring you a greater sense of peace. Nothing can deliver Balance to your life more than making choices that honor who you are. So choose to renew yourself with a clear plan of what’s important and receive the gift of Balance this year.

Author's Bio: 

Victoria FittsMilgrim, PCC directs True Life Coaching & Retreats in Durango, CO. With over 25 years in the field of personal transformation she has been a Certified Coach/Retreat Leader since 2002. She is the recipient of the 2009 Extraordary Women Award. Her retreats and coaching offer a safe, loving and fun environment to come home to your True Self. She is the real deal when it comes to sustainable and positive personal change. Find out more about Victoria and her offerings at