Tis the season to be jolly – or more like blooming bonkers busy!

There are presents to be bought, food to sort, Christmas cards to send (does anyone still send them apart from me?) and Santa visits to organise – all of this on top of everyday life, work, family, house, etc

Running your own business and farming are full-time jobs. Running a food business and farming? There is always something to be done – just ask my kids; they definitely won’t disagree with you.

But this is all sounding a little “bah humbug” and it’s Christmas. That crazy, fun-filled, pressurised, eat-and-drink-all-you-want, movie binge-watching with the family time of year!

You owe it to yourself and your loved ones to have some time off and enjoy it.

All year we work hard and, often, long hours to tend to the land and animals, produce a quality product or provide service to the customer. Christmas is a time to reflect on all that has happened over the last 12 months and make plans for the next 12.

How can we make sure that we have time to rest and reflect?

  • Get organised – you know Christmas is coming, so get doing. Make a list (as Santa advises) of all you need to do, presents to buy, food to organise and get doing it. Gone are the days of rushing into town on Christmas Eve – online shopping is here to stay, so don’t leave things until the last minute. I promise, you will feel so much better.
  • Get the work jobs done – if, like us, there are jobs to be done on the farm or at work over the Christmas, get them done as early as possible and try to do them with a positive attitude. No one wants to work on Christmas day, but if you have to, a positive mindset will help. Only do the essential jobs that have to be done. The rest can wait a few days!
  • Take time to go for a walk or, at least, get outside – as tempting as it is to never leave the couch and the selection box, do try and get outside for a walk. It is a lovely opportunity to appreciate the season, to enjoy your own company and the company of those who mean the world to you. We can all overindulge over the festive season, so getting outside will help.
  • Be mindful of others – some people adore Christmas (like my friend who has his tree up as soon as Halloween is over), but some may find the season tough and can’t wait for it to be over. Whichever camp you fall into, don’t try to convert everyone to your side. Peace and goodwill to all, remember, and a little kindness can go a long way.
  • Finally, try and take some time to reflect, review and plan – these have been tough, unprecedented times, which we are still leaning to live in. Life may be more difficult. We may have lost loved ones or faced our own personal battles, but as you reflect on the last 12 months give yourself a pat on the back because you are still here – you made it!
  • So, when the turkey has been eaten, presents have been opened and you are where you want to be, take a moment to be thankful for all your blessings. If that is difficult to do because of where you are, remember, nothing stays the same forever, things will always change and as 2021 draws to a close, be grateful for it and look forward to 2022 with hope and excitement.

    Happy Christmas to you all.

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