(5 minute read)
Here’s the thing around the holidays (and it does not matter what denomination you are and when you celebrate) traditions when honored year upon year become magical. There are few people I know who don’t enjoy having something special to look forward to; anticipation of something that’s a “feel good”.
Whether it’s the sinfully decadent shortbread recipe of your mother’s you try to replicate in her current angelic absence (or this keto-friendly substitute), the annual Nutcracker date with your crew, watching Miracle on 34th Street on Christmas Eve, going out to get your tree on the same date each year, setting it up to candlelight and a well-curated Christmas playlist (classical, R&B & holidays scores) with generously spirited eggnog in your Clark Griswold inspired moose mug – tradition is just plain magical. Add in snowy ski trips to Whistler, coziness by the fire at The Four Seasons, and bustling Italian dinners at Il Caminetto – these mentioned are a handful of my snow-season, holiday traditions 😉
Think of traditions as value investments: what you meaningfully put in you get out. The cost is what you make it, the greater the investment (effort in time & heart, not necessarily monetary), the greater the return and the value immediately outweighs the cost. Indeed, the act of showing up for these things, and investing extra time, heart and bank is usually the case, though the return is all worth it. Traditions anchor society, families, friendships, and the practise of self love with oneself, not to mention history and roots past. It’s a consistently recurring honor that is shared.
The key words herein include: time investment, inclusion (of those who share the tradition) and consistency year upon year.
Now anchor these 3 words/terms with a) your finances and b) your career and add the words respect & return.
- Time Investment
When you are consistent about your actions and strategic about your plans (around your finances and your career), you give yourself the automatic opportunity to be paid back and have something to look forward to. What you put in, you get out. The degree of consistency to which you show up and respect your finances and business practises will most definitely have an impact on the return you see. Why not make it something to look forward to! Get out your fucking moose mug, fill it up, and let’s do this => cash flow strategy and bigger picture vision planning strong!
In terms of strategy and management that is consistent in theme, one can apply to the type of return they want to see in the money and professional worlds, and their relationships.
When you are mindful and create a plan/strategy around your finances, business and cash flow (including personal), a personalized roadmap is generated and acts as a guide to stick to. This roadmap/strategy/guide/whatever have you, is something that will help you make decisions in a responsive way vs. reactive way should there be a change in plans (which in life, there always is). When you consistently show up for anything (here we state money and career), this shows respect and allows you to be an active participant in these areas. Respect for capital is huge! Especially on a universally-inclined note, not just material.
You decide the degree to which you want to consistently carry these practises forward (cash flow strategy, bigger picture vision planning, respect for capital). I say carry forward, as the “something to look forward to” and “positive outcome” doesn’t happen in a vacuum. Results in life, business and finance take consistent work, practice, strategy and management to get you where you want to be; it’s not an auto-pilot or set and forget system.
Point: you get out what you put in, and when you repeat the action, things get easier. Familiarities become second nature acts to look forward to. Make nice with your finances & business and you can’t go wrong in achieving your bigger picture, grander plan, why you wake up each morning vision. Add it to your list of traditions each year as you prep for the year ahead. Treat this cash flow & bigger picture vision strategy/planning as a gold-paved roadmap that’s filled with hidden gems along the way; treat it with respect. It’s your lifeblood and pulse that will help bridge the gap from A to B – and help you have a little fun, a lot of success, and ultimately freedom along the way.
With every decision you make be it time, heart or monetary – do the best pre-game prep and analysis to see if the long-term value outweighs the upfront cost.
Back to holiday traditions and to-do’s to account for year upon year. Here are a handful I feel are worth the investment (some cost friendly, others splurge worthy) and those you share these will be sure to appreciate the value:
- Having a trim the tree ritual (think: tunes, moose mugs, twinkly lights, all the feels)
- Venturing out to the Nutcracker (think: grab your girls, family or neighbor who’s family lives across the world)
- Sleigh rides to tour lights (think: to-go mug, cozy clothes, fun night out doing something different)
- Spa days (think: holiday party, self care day, girl’s outing, mother/daughter, fluffy robes, decadent pampering)
- Watching your fave holiday movies with the tree lights on in the background and your fave candle burning
- Doing a baking swap or making preserves or salsa and handing out as homemade gift-love
- Having company over and preparing an appetizer night or doing a potluck
- Saying no to obligations you want nothing to do with! Yes, create a tradition and habit of not over-attending.
- Volunteering & donate as much as possible where you can with what you have
- Plan a vacation or staycation this time of year that everyone has to look forward to (ski & mountains, sun & sand, or simply if at home – off with the electronics for one weekend)
- Not getting out of your PJ’s Christmas Day
- Dressing up on Christmas Eve and having a neighborly block party (loved this concept when I spent Christmas in Baton Rouge, LA, with a friend one year)
- Set aside a day to write out your holiday cards, classic film in the background while sipping something holiday-like
- Set aside time for phone calls to those you love but won’t see. It’s impossible to make them all in one day 😉
- Do you cash flow planning, and link this all to your bigger picture vision 🙂
Traditions when repeated take mindful thought and yes – cost, though you do truly get in what you put out. The same as planning around finance and business, input equals output and who doesn’t want a pleasant journey?
Now tell me, what are some of your favorite holiday traditions? I’d love to hear.