Category Archives: Holidays

Gifts for Yourself

Presents to Give Yourself all Year Long

Ideas for using the list:
  • Ours is a work driven and plugged in culture. We need stress breaks or mini vacations to replenish ourselves. Taking time for ourselves increases enjoyment of life and boosts energy and creativity. Have you ever noticed that some of your best ideas come when you are not working?
  • Add ideas of your own. Be sure to include activities you enjoy, but rarely give yourself permission to do.
  • This is a PG rated list. Add some sexy items.
  • Color code with markers into categories: O-15 minute vacations; 20 minutes – 1 hour vacations; a couple of hours; long vacations.
  • Frame, or keep mini cheat sheet in your wallet or purse.
Walk or bike or skate instead of ride.
Blow up a balloon and use it as a toy.
Make something.
Give yourself a complement.
Search out a long lost friend.
Read a poem aloud.
Look at the stars.
Visit someone who needs company.
Use a new word.
Open up to the closest person to you.
Frame a picture or have it framed.
Forget an old grudge.
Have a picnic.
Help a stranger.
Go to the library.
Try a new food.
Be thankful.
Read a magazine article.
Take a risk.
Listen to the rain on the roof.
Wade through a pile of leaves.
Plant a tree.
Say, “I love you.”
Hold a hand.
Take a rainy day nap.
Take a nap in the sunshine.
Listen to what you hear.
Sign up for a class.
Do something you have wanted to do.
Get a massage.
Contact someone who has been on your mind.
Say, “YES!”
Learn something new.
Surprise a child.
Hug someone.
List 10 things that you do well.
Throw away something that you don’t like.
Watch a construction crew at work.
Say, “No.”
Curl up with a blanket, a book, and hot cocoa.
Buy a ticket to a special event.
Return something that you have borrowed.
Organize some small corner of your life.
Try to feel a person’s hurt or joy.
Pop popcorn.
Turn off the screen and talk.
Listen to birds.
Admire the beauty of dew.
Draw a picture, even if you “can’t” draw.
Keep a secret.
Practice courage in one small way.
Warm a heart.
Laugh at yourself.
Enjoy silence.
Walk to the nearest park.
Break a bad habit, if just for today.
Get to know the neighbor’s cat or dog.
Bake bread.
Go wading.
Light candles in glass and do an enjoyable activity.
Pick up a travel book and dream.
Smell a flower.
Send a card to someone for no reason.
Kiss someone.
Clean out your wallet.
Watch the sunrise.
Watch the sunset.
Tell someone how much s/he is appreciated.
Look at old photos.
Encourage a young person.
Follow an impulse.
Ask a grieving person to share stories.
Talk to your pet.
Roll down a hill.
Write a poem or story.
Start a new project.
Finish an old project.
Walk barefoot.
Extend yourself for someone.
Tell a joke.
Take a different route.
Acknowledge when you are wrong.
Volunteer for a favorite cause.
Buy yourself a present.
Build a sandcastle.
Have breakfast in bed.
Let someone do you a favor.
Reread a favorite book.
Give your cat some catnip.
Allow yourself to make a mistake.
Hide a love note where the loved one will find it.
Lie on a blanket on the grass.
Take time to talk to children in the neighborhood.
Go for a swim.
Do something hard to do.
Wool gather. Stare into space.
Rearrange a room.
Relax and listen to music and nothing else.
Do a random act of kindness.

©2014 Noreen Wedman

Liberating Valentine’s Day

from being a “Couples Only” Holiday

Valentines Day Hearts in a HeartWho says Valentine’s Day has to be just for couples? I loved Valentine’s Day as a child because everyone gave everyone else a Valentine’s Day card and there was just a tantalizing possibility of a flirtation. Why not make Valentine’s Day a day of celebrating love in all forms? Even, if one is in a partner relationship, the “ship” just might not be in the best “shape” on February 14. With all of the above in mind, I made a list of suggestions to make Valentine’s Day Happier for Everyone.

1. It’s a great day to love yourself better.
2. Make a list of positive things that people have said about you (and keep it for future reference and to make additions).
3. Pamper yourself. Schedule a massage, Reiki session, or spa visit.
4. Make a list of 5 things that you enjoy doing, but routinely deny yourself. Then do as many as you can fit in on that day.
5. Engage in a creative activity: draw, paint, sew, build something, sing, play music…
6. If single and looking, send a Happy Valentine’s Day wish to the people that you have been admiring on the Internet.
7. Contact people who have touched your heart and wish them a lovely day and share something that you have appreciated about them.
8. Gather your single friends together and have a dinner. On one of my more memorable Valentine’s days, one of my female friends reserved a room at a nice sushi restaurant for her female friends and asked us to bring something to read on the subject of love.
9. Do something unconventional, like go for a hike with your partner or with friends, to break through the expectations surrounding V-day.
10. If you have specific wishes, discuss them ahead of time and make plans. Waiting too late invites disappointment. It is almost impossible to get reservations at a decent restaurant the day before, much less on, Valentine’s Day.
11. If you are breaking up or have broken up with someone who is abusive to you or who is not good for you, you risk reopening the door by sending a Valentine’s day greeting. If they are dangerous to you, consider the words of my friend Jim McGregor, who wrote in “I Love You Enough to Let You Go” (a pamphlet on recovering from codependency), “I love you enough to never see you again.”
12. Consider make it an ecologically friendly holiday. I found a lot of sites just by searching “green Valentine’s Day.”
13. Make room for practicing random acts of kindness on Valentine’s Day.
14. If the whole idea of Valentine’s Day annoys you, consider volunteering. The earth and the people on it need a lot of  love.

Sometimes, it is not possible to have a Happy Valentine’s Day, so give yourself permission to have a day of solace, and cry, if it helps.

© 2009-2013 Noreen Wedman

Oh No! Not New Year’s Resolutions!

Best wishes for a wonderful New Year!
May it be filled with unexpected treasures, loving connections, and new successes!
Since New Years Resolutions tend to fail, let’s dismiss the idea as untenable. I suspect that one of the reasons New Years Resolutions fail is that the term resolve probably automatically sets up defenses. I prefer working with terms that are more motivating like desires, goals, and intentions. Here’s some ideas for creating desirable change in your life. Continue reading

Surviving and even Thriving Through the Holidays

Happy Holidays!

I think it is possible to enjoy the holidays – One Day At A Time – or at least make them meaningful. Continue reading

Uses of Thanks Giving

When times are difficult, it can be very difficult for us to find gratitude in our hearts. Of course, when times are tough is when we need it most. I am not referring to the saccharine admonishments we have all heard from others, like “Cheer up! It could be worse!” Nor am I referring to Gratitude used as a deterrent to grieving – doing that can keep us as stuck as wallowing in self-pity. Gratitude is more like taking an inventory of what we still have on stock, which can be heartening and energizing, and easier to do as shock and grief begin to subside. Continue reading