Tying the Knot in a Meaningful and Memorable Way (Without Losing Our Savings or Sanity)

Monday, November 8, 2010

Staying Grounded: When It's Time to Close the Computer

Image courtesy of the lovely cakies

Last year, I didn't do anything to festively decorate our home for the holidays or even anything particularly creative to celebrate them. Honestly, with the onslaught and quick succession of Halloween, Matt's birthday, Thanksgiving, and then Christmas, I barely did much of anything except pull together a Halloween costume (I was a melting polar ice-cap) and drag my butt to nine holiday parties (or was it 14?).

At the time, I decided that this year I was going to be more prepared. I was going to start everything earlier so I could properly space out my crafting and the demand on my creativity and time. I bookmarked all the cute, crafty holiday ideas I had seen floating around the blogosphere and left it at that.

So when September of this year rolled around, I started working on my Halloween costume. In October, I started working on our holiday decorations. By the end of the month, I had made a fabric bunting banner to hang, a quilted table runner, and an advent calendar. I felt really proud of myself.

And then November rolls around and all the blogs start talking about their crafty responses to the holiday season and their ideas for festivizing, and I start to doubt the choices I've made and the things I've already produced.

Take the leaf garland pictured above, for example. When I saw it, I immediately thought, "I must make that! My bunting looks so dowdy in comparison. Her bunting is much more my style."

And in an instant, the pride I felt around completing my projects early (and thinking they looked pretty good), started to melt away. Instead, I started to feel regret, remorse, and longing for something different and better.

And then my small little sane voice chimed in with: "Sara, you are being CRAZY! Shut your computer this instant."

Oh, how I appreciate that voice! It's the same voice that rescued me countless times during the wedding planning process. It's the voice that realizes there is always something better, different, more creative, more my style, more unique, more interesting--the list goes on and on. It's the voice that appreciates the internet with its countless blogs, tutorials, images, websites, and message boards, but also the voice that acknowledges that the internet can be too much of a good thing. Too many options and too much choice can create a downward spiral of self-doubt and coveting.

It's so counterproductive to spend hours collecting ideas about something, make a decision, implement that decision, and then see new ideas and start doubting your previous decisions (or to start thinking that you have to do more than you originally intended to do, just because another new idea has come up).

When that happens to me, I literally have to rescue myself. I have to throw out a life preserver to the part of myself that is sinking into irrationality, despair, and futility.

I start by closing my computer. And then I usually tell Matt about my silliness. The act of saying it out loud helps me see the full extent of said silliness even more. Then I do something productive like read (a real book) or cuddle with Matt. Finally, I thank my lucky stars that I was able to avert yet another bout of blog-induced insanity (at least for the moment).

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Eleanor said...

Wow - I can totally relate to this! From wedding planning, to just needing to get away from the online world. Here's something sad: sometimes I tell my husband we should get a TV so at least we're staring at the same screen together!

Kristine said...

I hear you. Internet addictions can be hazardous to one's mental health.

I envy you your crafting skills. Since I am not remotely crafty I normally just buy all of my festivity. Which is not nearly as nice but better than bunting that looks like a toddler could do better.

Beth Ann said...

Great reminder.Thank you!

Chris Wolfgang said...

amen and amen. i have a year to go yet before my wedding, and i'm already experiencing the wishiwashiness. So i try to limit myself to exploring/entertaining ideas about things for which i still need solutions.

lizzie said...

i do the exact same thing...the second i start to feel stressed by all the options, it's closing time and i separate from my computer and phone and tv...reading and cuddling are massively underrated.

wedding photography perth said...

Thanks for sharing this.thank you!

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