New Year’s Thoughts by Sandy Morris, International President

Can you believe it’s that time of year again already?!

If your tendency is to lean towards procrastination, the New Year can either be your best friend or worst enemy.  Like any good friend, the New Year fills us with hope and encouragement.  It reminds us that time is on our side and that we’ve got 365 blank pages ahead of us.  But as time goes on, the New Year can begin to shift from being one of our closest friends to one of our biggest enemies, putting off joining the gym, cooking more at home, getting fit, or being better at meeting commitments and deadlines.

According to a survey of 2000 people, the majority of us are expecting New Year’s to be some sort of magical day where something will finally “click” and we’ll do what we’ve been wanting to do for months.  As awesome as that would be, the reality is, New Year’s or not, we’re going to have to put in the effort to prioritize our goals and then take action.

How about we mix up our own magical formula for curing our procrastination?  That would be nice.  I am a queen of procrastination at times.  I think I inherited it, that must be the cause.

Step 1: Bundle Your Temptations

The first step is to mix up what you love with the what you procrastinate about!  For instance, only watch your favorite tv show while walking on the treadmill, or you could try to only have dessert with sorority events, or only get a pedicure with a friend who might be a prospective member.

Step 2: Use Rewards

The second step is to add in some immediate positive reinforcement for doing the thing you’ve been procrastinating.  For example, if you prepare your lunches and snacks for the work week ahead, allow yourself to watch your favorite Netflix show.  Rewards reinforce behaviors and are ultimately helpful in building habits long-term — figure out a reward for your members who bring in a new pledge to the Chapter.

Step 3: Set Smarter Goals

The third step is to make sure your goals are achievable.  What can often be the trigger for procrastination is feeling overwhelmed from the start of your goal!  And as most of us know, getting started with any goal is usually the toughest part.  A great way to make goals feel less overwhelming is to make them SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Realistic and Time-Bound).  Let’s set small goals and try to accomplish them one at a time.  Make a goal for March, maybe set a plan for a rush party.  Then in October plan a pledge party.  Make it part of your calendar, plan ahead, set a measurable goal and make it realistic for your Chapter.  Embrace it!  Let’s make 2020 the best year yet!

Consider looking at all that Sigma Phi Gamma has survived over the last 100 years.  We can do this!

The Reason for the Season… by Pat Herweg

Now I know why the elves have a whole year to prepare for Santa’s BIG night.  It is exhausting being an elf!

My sorority sisters took on a large undertaking this year.  We provided a little bit of Christmas Cheer for homeless women and their children.  We prepared 62 gift bags for the women and 34 gift bags for the children ages 5 months to 16 years old.  A secret Santa (hopefully a sister soon) made Blankets for all the children adding a wonderful edition to our gift bags.

Last night we delivered the bags, to be given out Christmas morning, and 12 of our sisters added our singing voices to a cafeteria audience of women and children.  All kinds of Christmas songs, goodies and crafts were on the agenda for the night.

The feeling we all experienced was amazing!!!  The Reason for the Season was shining bright on a snowy, dark night in Downtown, Buffalo, New York.

Respectfully submitted,

Pat Herweg (Treasurer), Eta Sigma Chapter, Omicron Province

Mu Eta Chapter’s Christmas Party by Cindy Worley

Mu Eta Chapter (Hays, Kansas)  had their Christmas Exchange Party at the Smoky Hill Country Club on December 3, 2019.  Chapter Sisters (and one guest) were decked out in their fine Christmas attire and the decorations were colorful and festive.  After a short meeting, conversation flowed freely and laughter and smiles were abundant.  Our meals were scrumptiously delicious and we had beautifully decorated cupcakes for dessert.  Everyone was so clever with their exchange gifts, and we all left with a smile on our face, a song in our heart and just a little bounce in our step.  We want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

 

Remembering and Cherishing Our Past So That We Can Build Our Future By Barbara Spreen, International Historian

Thanksgiving was just a few days ago and I am sure that most of us spent the day with our families or friends cherishing all the times, good and bad, that we have shared and being grateful that we had each other for love and support.  I too spent the day with family, my sister, Jackie.  We traveled to North Dakota for the funeral, the following day, of a beloved uncle.  He and our aunt and their family shared their home and lives with my family for one week every summer when we took our family vacation at home in North Dakota, spending one week with my mother’s family and one week with my father’s family.  That bond grew so strong and deep that I have continued to journey to North Dakota, almost yearly, from my home in Indiana.

I don’t tell you this story to receive sympathy from you for my uncle’s passing but to make you all realize that this too is the foundation of Sigma Phi Gamma Sorority.  We are sisters who share our lives, good and bad, who are always there for each other and that bond grows stronger and deeper with each passing year.  How encouraged I feel, as International Historian, that just as we try to keep alive the memories of our personal families with connections, like with my uncle and his family, but we also want to keep that bond alive with our Sigma Phi Gamma sisters.

With the celebration of our 100th anniversary this next year, let us each renew our commitment to Sigma Phi Gamma and be that family that thrives and grows in love and friendship, who keeps all those cherished moments alive and wants to ever expand our family so that more women may share this great love that we now hold dearly. In today’s society, we are a lucky group, with so many people searching for love and friendship, let us be open to expanding our hearts and minds to reach as many women as we can to join our ranks and change not just ourselves and Sigma Phi Gamma but these women’s lives and more lives through our continued service to our communities.  May the Holiday Season bring peace to your hearts and lives and blessings to all we touch with our love.