Holidays are about enjoying those special moments with family, friends, and loved ones. Holidays are about enjoying the festivities of gatherings and events that embrace our personal, professional and spiritual communities. However, because of all of the pressures of shopping, planning, and travel, etc., it often brings forth feelings on the negative side, that you have little or no control over what’s happening around you. Sometimes, we get so caught up in holiday rituals that that overwhelm is a given. Let’s face it… sometimes we find ourselves surrounded by squabbling family members and old tensions, we can become over budget on our shopping lists, as well as feeling stress because we’ve over committed ourselves. All of which add a stress factor on top of the normal hustle and bustle of the holiday season.
But, there is GOOD NEWS! There is a way to avoid the “holiday stress factor”, by centering yourself and setting expectations for what you want your holiday season to be. Repeat this out loud: “I want peace. I want love. I want joy.” That’s right! In order to maintain a level of sanity, we must be intentional. Realistically, if you are like me you will have to repeat these things out loud to yourself throughout the holiday season. It may sound extreme – But, it works!
The only person that can set your level of peace, love, and joy during the Holiday Season is you. You can set your personal compass on how you will flow, which will also allow you to bring peace, love, and joy to those around you.
Here are a few ways to bring Peace, Love, and Joy during the Holidays.
- Be easy on yourself. Disappointment will be inevitable if you expect everything to go perfectly during the holiday season. Be mindful that people are weighed down by demands they make on themselves. So make an effort to consciously search for ways to be as easy on yourself as possible. Take time out for a few quiet private moments to relax and meditate, this is a sure way to lighten the stress level.
- Avoid toxicity. Do not engage in toxic opportunities that arise from others such as bad emotions, tension, stress, and or conflict. If you find yourself getting sucked in, do your best to walk away and remove yourself from the situation.
- Practice gratitude and appreciation towards others. When interacting with your family, friends and loved ones show them how much you appreciate them. Make a conscious decision to be in the present moment. Allow them to feel your positive vibes and good will. Also show empathy and compassion for those around you. Empathy isn’t always “feeling sorry” for someone, it can also be displayed in the form noticing how happy someone is, and giving positive compliments, etc.
- Set some boundaries. It’s inevitable, someone may attempt to revive old issues or possibly find ways to drop their inhibitions, when this happens things may be said and done that could lead to regret. It’s going to happen, someone will ignore boundaries. However, it is up to you to maintain your boundaries, it is OK to politely point out when you are uncomfortable. If the other person can’t pick up on a hint, there’s no need to continue to repeat your objection, take the high road and gracefully walk away.
- Enjoy, the season! There is so much beauty to be enjoyed during this time of year. Decide to embrace every magical moment with family, friends, and loved ones. Life is short, and tomorrow isn’t promised to anyone. Make every dinner party a super special one, receive every personal encounter as a gift, and realize the fact that you are surrounded by others means that you are blessed with the gift of love and relationship.
These few areas can give you a personal agenda for the holidays. You can personalize them to fit your life with a little creativity. Remember, you have the ability to maintain peace, love, and joy during the holiday season… it’s just a matter of setting your expectation and deciding to do so.
Wishing you a Very Merry Christmas, Joyful Holidays, and Happy New Year!