December 2015
The Anticrastination Tip Sheet

Author of The Clutter-Busting Handbook and
Manage Your Time to Reduce Your Stress: A Handbook for the Overworked,
Overscheduled and Overwhelmed


The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.
~~ Hans Hofmann

Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is the noble art of leaving things undone.
The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of non-essentials. ~~ Lin Yutang

Our life is frittered away by detail… Simplify, simplify. ~~ Henry Thoreau

Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated. ~~ Confucius

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. ~~ Leonardo da Vinci

Message from Rita
Dear Readers,
Ahhh … it’s holiday time again. And even those who are not religious enjoy celebrating the spirit of the time which includes -- gathering with family and friends, decorating, cooking and sharing meals together, gift-giving …. and exhaustion, stress and frazzled thinking.

Here are ideas with hopes you find one or more tips to help reduce the stress and exhaustion that often hits at this time of year.


  1. Simplify, Simplify, Simplify.
    Can you streamline or eliminate some of your gift-giving to family, friends or co-workers, plus maybe decorating, cooking, and clean-up?
  2. Back off from the expectation of doing everything.
    Figure out whose expectations you're trying to live up to - your own? your family's? your friends’? maybe even someone who has passed away? Keep asking yourself, "Why am I doing this?"
  3. Stop agreeing to attend a gazillion activities and parties that you don't enjoy. Go to the ones you absolutely have to (your mother's place, maybe?), say no to the others.
  4. Once you've cleared your calendar during the holidays, plan one event you would love:
  • lunch with a friend?
  • prayer, meditation or other spiritual time?
  • driving around looking at decorations?
  • serving meals to the homeless?
  • spending time with a favorite child (while the parents wrap presents)?
  • a nap?
  • a concert, play or pageant?
  • time alone?
  1. Make Lists
    Instead of pushing thoughts of the holidays out of your mind, take a few minutes now to make a list of ALL you have to do, for example:

    - decorate
    - attend parties
    - buy gifts for family and friends
    - buy gifts for some people at work
    - buy, address and mail out cards
    - And maybe add to your list:
    schedule time off for yourself --- to recharge your battery, get with people you like or just to do something you enjoy.

  2. Put up only half your decorations this year. See if the world ends or if anyone complains. Get rid of those decorations you never use. Donate them to a charity where someone would cherish & love using them.
  3. Clarify what holiday chores you enjoy --- decorate, bake, shop, entertain, etc. See if you can figure out ways to do more of what you like & less of what you don't like to do.
  4. If you dread loneliness during this season, invite someone else who is alone to join you to attend a concert or somehow spend time together.
    Another idea if you're alone is to call the Salvation Army or your church or synagogue to volunteer for something during the holidays. It's a fun way to meet people. You can work on days other than the actual holiday, if you want.
  5. Get started on your shopping today & try to have it done this week.
  6. Set dates on your calendar to decorate, wrap or whatever, so you aren't frantic and frazzled at the last minute.
  7. Schedule - actually mark on your calendar - a few days or evenings off just to relax and enjoy yourself.
  8. Don't let stories on TV make you feel inadequate. Most families don't have perfect happy endings to every situation like the people in holiday shows. And NOBODY is as hysterically, insanely happy as the people in the commercials.

May you have a blessed, joy-full, peace-full, wonder-full holiday season.
Our family celebrates Christmas. From Bruce and me, plus our Dream Team of Mickey, Deb, Erik, Maria and Kim – we send you and your loved ones our best wishes for a:

Vrolijke Kersttmis
Joyeux Noel
Froeliche Wihnachten
Kinga Shinnen
Ichok Yilara
Glaedelig Jul
Felice Pascuas Boldog
Karacsonyi Unnepeket
Feliz Navidad
Sarbatori Felicite
Tin Hao Nian
Felice Natale
Glad Julen
Boas Festas
Wesloych Swiat
Veselele Vanoche
Sretan Bozic
Mele Kalikimaka
Nollag shona dhuit
Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas and a Joyful, Peaceful, Loving, Healthy, Prosperous New Year!


People put off all sorts of tasks, errands and chores, but many also put off fun, relaxation and managing stress.

Join this FREE TeleClass to learn healthy ways to deal with stress plus explore a variety of ideas for recharging your battery. Once you begin to focus on ways to add fun and relaxation to your life, you will see your stress melt away and often feel more energized.
Cost: Free
How: By phone, no computer needed
When: Wednesday, Dec. 30
1:00 PM till 2:00 CST
Register at 888-600-2560 or

Go to

Please share this Tip Sheet with 2 or 3 friends who would be interested. And feel free to use this message in your blog or newsletter, as long as you include my bio and contact info:

Rita Emmett
Author of The Procrastinator's Handbook,
The Clutter-Busting Handbook and
Manage Your Time to Reduce Your Stress: A Handbook for the Overworked,
Overscheduled, and Overwhelmed
2331 Eastview
Des Plaines, IL 60018

No trees were destroyed in the sending of this message,
but a significant number of electrons were terribly inconvenienced.