creative energy that speaks
Tis the Season


‘Tis the season to be jolly!

Kristen Barada, Marketing Strategist

Fa la la la la… and that’s it for me.

During this time of year, that’s about all it takes for me to withdraw and head back into my dark, comfy office where the heater’s always running. (Note: At SDi, many of us don’t really believe in turning the lights on during our workday. Really. Stop by any time, any day. Most of us are sitting in the dark with our creative wheels turning.) The holidays start a few weeks of stress and constant motion, overwhelming me to the point where I can be not so jolly.

This past weekend, as I was trying to put together my family’s Christmas card, I had considerable difficulty finding just the right sentiment. Would it be sweet, sappy or silly? Usually, it is an easy call with only one family photo as an option. Somehow, it seems my family ends up bearing ridiculous faces, with at least one of my boys shoving a hand in someone’s face or sticking out their tongues at the last minute.

This year was different. I had a pretty good photo. Wahoo! However, I didn’t have a phrase, a theme. At SDi, marketing and strategy are my main job responsibilities — it’s what I do. So, how could this be happening to me on what is supposed to be such a familiar holiday task? Stress. Building. Already.

And then, I FINALLY found it, or quite possibly, it found me: Wishing you time to enjoy the simple pleasures of this holiday season.

The anxiousness disappeared, and things became clearer to me, instantly — my “aha!” moment. Ever had one? These precious sparks happen to me more at work than at home, honestly. Like when a client’s messaging comes naturally. (And then is approved without a single edit!) I think that’s why this new holiday tagline hit me so hard, but at the same time was just so peaceful. It was time to take a step back and just enjoy.

So, over the next month, remember to “opt out” of the craziness of your office, daily schedule/to do lists, etc. to get the most from your creative thinking. I choose to do so by using my time wisely, promising to:

  • Focus on friends, family and those who really matter (including my co-workers who I also consider my best friends/family)
  • Laugh at the dozens of Nerf darts (see photo at left) that fill my tree rather than stressing over a clean house (feel free to replace the mess of darts with loads of laundry, shopping, etc.)
  • Unplug my brain from distractions and remaining present (at work and at home)
  • Breathe, play, smile and, most importantly, enjoy

Some might say that’s pretty close to being jolly.