Are You Ready to Take the NO-NO-November Challenge?


I can remember a time when Halloween was just Halloween – scary, sugar-coated, fun for all ages. In the last few years, it has taken on an additional meaning in my life. It has become the lone, fragile gatekeeper standing between me and the pressure of another holiday season.

It wasn’t always this way, but for many of us the holidays have become such a whirlwind of activity, obligation, overconsumption, and regret that it seems the joy & true meaning have been lost. I want to enjoy this year.

I want to experience the company holiday party as a welcome evening of camaraderie, not a burden added to a colossal heap of obligations. I don’t want the frenzy of Q4 to suck the life out of my family & friends forcing them to check email during family get togethers. I want to enjoy the musical splendor of a holiday show without the nagging distraction of an extensive to-do list scrolling through the back of my mind. I don’t want my loved ones to waste money on gifts of things I already own but are presently lost in the back of an overstuffed closet. Maybe peace on Earth is out of reach for this year, but I’m ready to fight for peace in my own personal world, even if it is limited to my home and my office.

In preparation for the holidays I will use November to reduce, remove, quit, stop, and minimize as many nonessential tasks, belongings, activities, people, habits, and projects as possible so that I can enjoy every minute the holidays have to offer. My ultimate goal is to be able to relax, de-stress, & be ready to face the New Year with vigor and inspiration.

The plan is a simple one… saying “NO”.

There, that is the plan. I will be doubling down on my NO philosophy in November in hopes of enjoying the bigger YES’s this holiday season.

Every week of November I will declutter some aspect of my life. I’ve organized my NO’s strategically in hopes of getting the best outcomes. Week 1 will focus on activities such as unnecessary meetings or Netflix binges. Doing this in Week 1 will free up time that will be needed in the 2nd week. Week 2 will be a traditional declutter of excessive belongings. As we move into Week 3, Thanksgiving will be upon us and so a d“E”-clutter will minimize electronic clutter in hopes that Thanksgiving will have fewer virtual responsibilities distracting from celebrating. Lastly, Week 4 will focus on removing whatever didn’t fit another category, slipped through the cracks, or got temporarily derailed by Thanksgiving.

Join me in making the holiday season less for everyone: less stressful, less expensive, less regretful, less exhausting, and less hurried. If no is the new yes, I’m pretty sure less is the new more.

What will you give up during the NO-NO-November challenge?

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