Bev Gibb News

Time to put the sequins away for another year… or is it?

I went back to work last week after being off for a couple of weeks which this year, felt like a really long time!

The festive period is not all sequins and glitter, joy and fun for everyone, I know that. In fact, it can be a really tough time. In the work that I do, I notice that Imposter Syndrome can creep in, our boundaries can be challenged, and our self-care can go right out of the window!

The pressure to ‘feel festive’. The pressure to have ticked off that to do list for the year and the overwhelm of realising that you didn’t actually complete even half of the things that you said you would, or your year has actually not panned out at all how you had promised yourself on the 1st of January 2022. Then we try to cram in so much in those last couple of weeks!

“We must catch up in the holidays!” Why do we wait until the last week of the year to try and catch up with everyone? Instead of taking some time out to relax, recharge and spend time with those closest to us, we feel this overwhelming pressure to fill our diaries, even though we might have a nice list of things we want to catch up on at home.

Also, the added pressure of the ever-expanding Christmas gift lists!

How many of us do that thing, just when the presents are being wrapped and you feel like there is not enough, so you bulk it out more, even though we’ve actually spent and bought quite enough?! Then, after the excitement of opening everything, it sits there untouched, for sometimes the rest of the year! The overwhelm of ‘stuff’ is real! Many of us consume all year round with a constant flow of ‘stuff’. I have actually got to the point that I am really struggling to keep up with the ‘stuff’, the clutter, the constant need for something new or the next occasion to count down to, now that Christmas has passed!

Not to mention the uncontrollable, external factors like the financial crisis adding to the worries. The pressures around owning a business, or being in a job which is surrounded in uncertainty, yet we still get caught up in these two weeks and get the sequins on and pretend everything is marvellous!

Can we stop the bus?? I heard myself say to someone in my house, during the holidays, ‘Can we not just be in the moment for a wee while?’ Can we enjoy the ‘stuff’ we have before moving on to the next thing? I felt like I was being physically carried down a rapid river! (cue scene from River Wild 1994!)

So for me, getting the sequins and the lippy on was a bit of a struggle at first – and not just down to the expanding waistline!  Don’t get me wrong, I had some amazing times with family and friends over the holidays. However, spurred on by our Festive Reflective Workshop we held at the end of December, I have also spent some time reflecting on last year and as I was doing that, feeling lots of emotions from excitement, joy, gratitude, inspiration and pride to those of overwhelm, panic, failure to have done everything on my list, pressure and uncertainty about the future as well.

Throwing a big fat full moon into the mix might also have had something to do with that!

However, 2022 has brought me even more wisdom and lots of learnings, in and out of work. There were lots of unintended outcomes – good and not so good! Times when I struggled to believe and times when I really had to trust my gut.

Most importantly I realised that there were many times that I could have spent my credits more wisely.

Those tokens that sit at the supermarket checkout? Little blue ones that you get to choose where to spend it? I imagine I have a wee pile of those and they represent my values and my boundaries. Those of you that know me refer to my credits a lot! One frequent example is if I want to spend credits eating a cake (which I love to do!!) I now will only choose a beautiful handmade cake and I will enjoy every last crumb, rather than waste my credits on a substandard mass produced, prewrapped cake.

How I spend time credits is high on the priority list this year – how I spend my time and who I spend that time with.  Is what I am spending my time on making me feel good or bringing me joy? Am I enjoying it? Is it moving me forward? Am I around the right people? Does the time fly when I’m with them, am I relaxed and able to completely be myself? If not, then what needs to change? What needs to go, or what do I need to bring in? Do I have space in my week to breathe? To recharge? Am I looking after my own wellbeing in order to do my best work and be the best version of me?

Are we saying No to protect our Yeses?

That’s an interesting one! How many of us struggle to say no, then before we know it our diary is full and we have no time to fit in our own stuff? Even if that is just sitting at home watching a film?! Do we protect our boundaries or do we have swinging gates in them?

Last weekend I took part in a Joy Audit workshop, run by a coaching chum (check out The Joy Collective on FB). I am not going to lie, I found it quite difficult to begin with, to identify quickly, something that brought me joy in 2022. My brain was doing what it is programmed to do, filtering out all the negative times and flashing them in front of my eyes! However, digging deeper and a quick scroll through 2022 in my phone’s photo album I started to remember moments where I felt sheer joy, whether it was something I saw that made me smile that compelled me to take a photo, or a time when I was uncontrollably laughing until tears are rolling down my face and the clicking starts (those that know, know!!). What made it so joyful? Who was I with, where was I? It wasn’t about ‘stuff’, it didn’t cost money, it wasn’t about that one day a year that we go crazy to try and feel joyful. By just remembering those times and how they made me feel, made me think about how I can keep recreating that feeling in 2023.

So, 2023 for me is about less ‘stuff’ and spending those credits wisely, saying No to some things so I can say Yes to others, making memories, trusting my gut more, laughing lots, loving lots and wearing the sequins any time I feel like it! Sequins are not just for Christmas!

Is this familiar? How are you going to spend your credits in 2024? What are you going to look back on in December this year and be proud of? If you feel stuck and could do with a bit of help this year drop me a line! Also, keep your eyes peeled for more workshops and group coaching opportunities coming up soon!