Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Keep Calm and Carry On!

I guess by now no-one can ignore the fact that Christmas is almost upon us. I'm surprising myself at how calm I seem to be this year! By this time I'm usually a gibbering wreck that my family and hubby give a wide berth too. I think that I must actually be starting to 'practice what I preach' as in a previous blog, cryptically titled 'Tomorrow is the day afters's yesterday', I talked about thinking carefully about what really needs to be done and when, in an attempt to cut down on stress levels. It's amazing how much can be achieved when you spend less time stressing!

Another lesson I'm learning is the importance of taking control if you find yourself in a situation that is potentially stressful. As part of my Open University course I have to create a wiki with a group of other students put together by our tutor. We don't actually ever meet, it all has to be done on-line via a forum set up for the purpose. This time last week I was panicking as only one other person had identified themselves as being part of my team. I knew that I had a choice-I could either let myself get stressed or I could see what I could do to help the situation. Firstly I emailed my tutor and asked her if she could give the others a gentle reminder and secondly I started posting suggestions and encouragements on the forum in an effort to elicit a response from my team members. It paid off and not only are we all set to go with the wiki, but a couple of the team have said how pleased they are to be part of such an organised group! This time last year, if faced with the same situation,I would've let it overwhelm me and and would've ended up completely stressed out.! 


 One thing that does seem to stress some women out at this time of year is the eternal quest to fit in to that 'little black dress' for the Christmas festivities! This is a stress I gave up a long time ago. For most of my adult life I was considered to be skinny-for this same period I was also struggling with ill health due to Lupus. As part of my 'New Beginnings' I've also decided to accept myself just as I am. Elizabeth Taylor famously said that as a woman grows older she should carry a little extra weight, not too much, just enough to plump out the wrinkles. It works for me! Of course there are the odd days, especially when I'm watching all the celebrities on Strictly Come Dancing dropping several dress sizes and looking amazing, when I wish I was a bit thinner. However, I'd rather be the way I am now carrying a few extra pounds and healthy, than the slimmer version of my younger, poorly self.

I think the picture above says it all! Of course I try to eat healthily and exercise but problems with my joints, a legacy of years of bad health limit me as to what I can do. One thing I do know is I'm not going to let this stop me or get me down. Age has brought with it a confidence I lacked when I was younger. No comment on the'sexy' part lol! This has been an amazing year and I'm not going to let an assignment for a course spoil the end of it! No! I'm going to 'Keep Calm and Carry On'!   

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