In my book, Mogul, Mom & Maid: The Balancing Act of the Modern Woman, women talk about the invisible tasks that take as much mental focus and energy as physical tasks like cooking and cleaning. A woman named Sharon describes these tasks. “It’s not … the laundry, it’s the mental awareness of the laundry. I know my son has only seven pairs of pants. I know it’s swimming day on Tuesday. I think through if his swimming stuff is packed up, including the swim cap. It’s the small details. And anything related to a doctor’s appointment, dentist, birthday parties, play dates, car pools, that’s me.”
JJ DiGeronimo, a director at a large technology company and author of The Working Woman’s GPS, says the invisible tasks are exhausting: “Although I’m very organized, there are few moments that I can just kick back and relax without worrying about all the things I have yet to check off my list. … many women I meet are committed to too many things and they are exhausted.”
During the winter holidays, invisible tasks multiply and as a result many women report elevated stress levels between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day. Don’t ruin your health and sanity trying to be Martha Stewart this Christmas – she has a staff. Go for good enough. Let go of some of those invisible tasks.
Over at The Huffington Post, I recommend seven things you can let go of this holiday season. You can read the list here. I promise, what you lose in baked goods and decorations, you’ll gain in peace and joy.